There are many roads for foreign citizens to come to the United States to visit, study, work or live permanently. Dakk provides clients with legal advice that ensures the most effective application process to puts them in the best possible scenario, and according to their personal situations.
We must consider several different factors and make sure you meet all the requirements to receive the visa or the immigration status for which you are applying, if not, we surely can find a different way of legally bring you to the U.S.
Temporary visas for people who want to come and visit or work for a short period of time in the United States.
B-1 Visa: Business-Based Immigration
The B-1 Visitor Visa is designed for temporary business trips, such as trips to negotiate contracts, attending exhibitions and conferences, short training sessions, consultations with suppliers and clients, etc
B-2 Visa: Tourism & Visit Visas
For a foreign citizen traveling to the United States for vacations or visiting temporarily, it is needed a B-2 Visitor Visa.
Visa Waiver Program
This program allows most citizens from certain designated countries participating in it, to travel to the United States and stay in the country for 90 days or less, for traveling or business purposes.
Study & Exchange Visas
Once you are accepted by a SEVP School in the United States, you should apply for an F-1 or an M-1 Student Visa, or the J-1 Visa Exchange Visitor Program. You may bring your spouse and/or children to reside with you while you study in the U.S.
E-2 Visa: Treaty Investor
This type of visa enables individuals of one of over 30 countries that have trade treaties with the United States, who have significant funds to invest to come into the U.S. for the purposes of setting up a business, practice, or office. This visa can be extended indefinitely.
Temporary Worker Visas are for people who intend to come to the United States for employment lasting a certain period of time. Each of the following visas requires the employer to first file for a petition for a foreign citizen.
H-1B Visa: Person in a Specialty Occupation
This is a Visa for a Person to work in a Specialty Occupation. The holder typically needs a university degree or its equivalent and it must be sponsored by a valid company.
H-2A Visa: Temporary Agricultural Worker
It is a visa for a Temporary or Seasonal Agricultural Worker. The potential employer must prove that there are not enough American capable workers, and some other requirements.
H-2 B Visa: Temporary Non-agricultural Worker
This type of visa was created for Temporary Non-Agricultural Workers. People who may apply for this visa don’t have a university degree. They could work on gardening, construction, forest, hotel cleaning staff, etc.).
H-3 Visa: Trainee or Special Education visitor
It is the visa for Trainee or Special Education visitor that is designed for people entering the U.S. for a period of up to two years in order to receive training. With this type of visa, no extensions of time are available, but holders may apply for a Change of Status.
L-1A Visa: Intracompany Transferee
Intracompany Transferee Visa allows US employers to transfer an executive or manager from one of their affiliated foreign offices to one of their offices in the United States. This type of visa also allows a foreign company to bring an employer to the US to open an office in this country.
O-1 Visa: Individual with Extraordinary Ability or Achievement
This is the visa for a person who possesses Extraordinary Ability in the sciences, arts, education, business, or athletics. People who have a demonstrated record of extraordinary achievement in the motion picture or television industry and has been recognized nationally or internationally for those achievements may also apply for this visa.
P-1 Visa: Individual or Team Athlete, or Member of an Entertainment Group
The P-1 is a Specialty US Visa for Individual or Team Athlete, or Member of an Entertainment Group, and their coaches or support staff, who want to enter the US for competing or participating in an event.
P-2 Visa: Individual or Group Artists or Entertainers
The P-2 classification applies for Individual Performer or Part of a Group Entering the United States to Perform Under a Reciprocal Exchange Program between an organization in this country and an organization in another country. This is designed for musicians and actors, and their staff team.
Q-1 Visa: Participants in an International Cultural Exchange Program
This type of visa is a temporary USA Exchange Visa which provides opportunities for cultural and employment exchange programs that allow visitors to temporarily work in the United States. This visa type is administrated by the USCIS.
TN Visa: NAFTA Professional Workers
This visa allows citizens of Canada and Mexico, within North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), to come to the United States to work in prearranged business activities at a professional level for US or foreign employers.
Accountants, Architects, Computer Systems Analysts, Economists, Engineers, Graphic Designers, Interior Designers, Lawyers, Teachers, and many other professionals, are welcome to come and legally work in the United States with a TN Visa.
Other types of visas
There are some other reasons for visiting the United States, besides tourism, studying, business, employment, and immigration.
– Receiving medical treatment in the United States.
– Diplomats and Foreign Government Officials.
– Employees of International Organizations.
– Foreign Military in the United States.
– Religious workers.
– Crewmembers on a ship or aircraft.
– Humanitarian and special situations.
Family-Based Immigrant Visas
A foreign citizen seeking to live permanently in the United States must have an immigrant visa. U.S. Citizens and Lawful Permanent Residents who are at least 21 years old can sponsor certain family members for getting a Green Card.
Immediate Relatives Categories
This type of visa is based on a closed family relationship with a US Citizen. It could be spouses, unmarried children under 21, parents of US Citizens with at least 21 years old, orphans adopted abroad by a US Citizen, or orphans to be adopted in the US.
If you do not fit into one of these categories, you may fit into the following.
Family Preference Categories
These visas are designed for specific, more distant, family relationships with a US Citizen or with a Lawful Permanent Resident of the United States.
These apply for:
– Unmarried sons and daughters of a US Citizen, their spouses, and their children.
– Spouses, minor children, and unmarried sons and daughters over 21 of Lawful Permanent Residents.
– Married sons and daughters of US citizens and their spouses and minor children.
– Brothers and sisters of U. citizens, and their spouses and minor children, provided the US citizens are at least 21 years old.
K-1 Fiancé(e) Visa
A foreign citizen may use this type of visa to travel to the United States to getting married to his or her US Citizen fiancé and being able to permanently live in this country. Once the couple married, the foreign citizen may apply for a Green Card and become a Permanent Resident of the United States.
Same-Sex Marriage Immigration
Same-Sex spouses of US Citizens and Lawful Permanent Residents have now the same rights as opposite-sex marriages. The US Citizen or LPR should file for petitioning his or her LGBT significant other to get the Green Card.
Adjustment of Status
This is the immigration process for changing from a nonimmigrant immigration status (tourism, studying, working), to a permanent residency, which is a Green Card holder.
A temporary visitor may obtain the Green Card if he or she meets three fundamental requirements:
– Be physically inside the United States while the application is filed and completed.
– Lawfully entry the United States with valid documentation.
– Have an approved and current I-130 petition, which is the application for Family-Based Immigration.
You can apply, renew, or replace your Green Card.
US Citizenship and Naturalization
Naturalization is the process in which a person not born in the United States may become a US Citizen who can not get deported, by the way.
The applicant person must meet several requirements:
– Be at least 18 years old-
– Have been a permanent resident for the last 5 years.
– Be currently married to and living with a U.S. citizen.
– Have been married to and living with that same U.S. citizen for the past 3 years.
– Establish residency in the state or (USCIS) district where he or she intends to apply.
– Have a “good moral character”.
– Have a basic spoken and written English and demonstrate knowledge of U.S. history and government.
– Recite the Oath of Allegiance.
Asylum or Refuge
An asylee is a person that has made it to the U.S. border or inside the country, legally or illegally, and is seeking protection because they have suffered persecution or fear that they will suffer persecution due to race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group or political opinion.
A refugee is a person that is outside the United States and is also seeking protection because he or she has suffered persecution or fear for the same reasons mentioned above.
The difference between an asylee and a refugee depends on where the person applies. People outside the United States must apply for a Refugee Status, while people inside the country or on the border, should apply for Asylum Status.
According to Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), immigrant men and women who are experiencing domestic violence in hands of their abuser – U.S. citizen or Legal Permanent Resident spouse or any other closed family relative -, may qualify for self-petition for legal status under VAWA.
If your auto-petition for VAWA gets approved and you meet the requirements, you could be eligible for becoming a Lawful Permanent Resident.
Deportation or Removal
Deportation is the administrative process to expel non-citizens from the United States to the country from which they arrived. This can happen for several reasons, like an immigrant violating Immigration Laws or committing felonies under Criminal Laws.
There are two categories for convictions with harsh immigration consequences:
– Crimes of Moral Turpitude: Perjury, Tax evasion, Wire fraud, Child Abuse, Carry a hidden weapon, etc.
– Crimes of Aggravated Felony: Theft, Filing a fraudulent tax return, Failure to appear in court,
There exist some other reasons for getting deportation not related to committing a crime, such as the denial of asylum, or violation of Green Card requirements.
How can you avoid the removal process? You better ask Dakk!