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Obtaining a Visitor Visa: B-1/B-2

Houston Temporary Visa Attorney

If you or someone you know is planning a short trip to the United States, you must obtain a temporary visitor visa. The temporary visitor visa is a non-immigrant visa designed for people who wish to come to the United State for business, tourism, pleasure or visiting. If you are a foreign national wishing to obtain a temporary visitor visa or if you are currently in the U.S. and need advice on how to apply for extensions or other visa options, an experienced Houston immigration attorney can provide you with the legal guidance you need.

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Business B-1 Visas

The business visa—otherwise referred to as the B-1 visa—is used for individuals who wish to travel to the United States to engage in temporary, business-related activities.

Qualified Activities for a Business Visa Include:

  • Consultations
  • Settling an Estate
  • Negotiating a Contract
  • Conferences
  • Scientific, Educational, Professional or Business conventions

Documents Required for B-1/B-2 Visas:

  • Form DS-160: this is the visa application. You can apply online at the US Department of State.
  • Your Passport: Your passport must not expire for at least six months past the extent of your intended visit in the United States.
  • Photo of Yourself: You will need to provide a US passport style photo of yourself in addition to the passport photo.
  • Documents Showing the Purpose of Trip: This could be your itinerary, tickets for activities, hotel reservations. You should also include the plane, boat, train or bus ticket for your return home.
  • Evidence You Will Return Home: Examples of proof you plan to return home could be your mortgage, long-term apartment lease, marriage or other close relationship with those staying in your country. You could also include documentation that a job will be waiting for you when you return from your trip.
  • Ability to Cover Expenses: This could be bank statements with accessible cash, personal financial statements or pay stubs from a current employer. If you are staying with a friend you could also bring a letter or email from them inviting you to stay with them

Foreign missionaries and certain ministers may also obtain temporary business visas where appropriate. In addition to foreign missionaries, medical students may also apply for a B-1 visa status if they are traveling to the U.S. for an unpaid observing internship.

Tourism and Visitor B-2 Visas

For those with an interest in coming to the United State purely for pleasure or tourism, the B-2 visa classification is the option they should choose.

  • Common Activities That Would Qualify Under a B-2 Visa:
  • Social Visits
  • Tourism
  • Amateur Sports
  • Music Events
  • Certain Medical Treatments
  • Required Documents for B-1 Visas:
  • Employer Letter for B-1 Visa: Your employer should write a letter explaining your job duties and what you plan to do in the US on your business trip. This letter should include the dates you planned on returning to your country.
  • Business Documents: If you are attending a trade show or convention during the duration of your stay, you may want to include a flyer or tickets to the event.

In order to qualify for a visitor visa, applicants must have the ability to prove their visit is purely temporary and for the activities permitted under a B-2 visa. If they are traveling for medical treatments they must possess documentation of the need for the treatment and the financial ability to pay for the treatment.

Get the Legal Guidance You Need

If you live outside the U.S. and need assistance obtaining a non-immigration visa, our Houston attorneys can help you. Many people get denied due to incomplete applications or insufficient proof they plan to return to their country. By enlisting an experienced Houston immigration attorney to assist you with this process, you can greatly increase the possibility of being approved for your B-1/B-2 visa.


Need help obtaining a visa? – Call us at (713) 839-0639 or (332) 330-9442 today.


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