Entering the United States on a temporary basis generally requires one to first obtain an appropriate visa. A U.S. visit that is temporary and for pleasure, for business (NOT employment), or for medical treatment typically require a visitor visa.

While it does not permit gainful employment while in the U.S., the B-1 for business is appropriate for certain activities related to commercial transactions. This visa category is used for personal and/or domestic attendants of certain nonimmigrants and U.S. citizens. The B-2 category is intended for tourism, social visits, certain medical treatments, and participation in amateur sports, music, and similar events. This category is also used for domestic partners not in a marital relationship, to accompany their qualifying partners.

Under applicable laws and regulations, B-1/B-2 visitors may be admitted for a period of one year, with the potential to extend the visit another six months; however, an initial admission period of six months is typical. Within the legal limits, the acceptable period of admission is determined at the port of entry, based on the purpose of the visit and other discretionary factors.

Individuals from designated countries may request the B-1/B-2 visa be waived by using the Visa Waiver Program (VWP) for temporary visits to the United States. The VWP follows a separate set of procedures and has specific requirements and restrictions different from the B-1/B-2 category.


  • Ability to demonstrate strong nonimmigrant intent with regard to the proposed trip to the United States [Ties outside of the United States, including family, employment and/or other financial ties are used to prove nonimmigrant intent].
  • A residence outside the United States
  • Ability to show the U.S. trip as purely temporary and for pleasure or certain permitted business activities
  • Financial ability to remain in the United States for the requested timeframe, without U.S. employment

  • How We Can Help You

  • ASM Legal Professional Corporation provides assistance and advice regarding B-1/B-2 options.
  • For those within the United States, our attorneys advise as to options for obtaining a change or extension of status to the B-1/B-2 category from within the United States, and represent individuals in connection with changes or extensions of status, if appropriate.
  • We provide assistance and advice related to B-1/B-2 visa applications at U.S. consulates to individuals outside the United States. We can assist in appropriate cases involving prior denials and prior immigration violations.