Alien visitors to the United States who come for business are covered by the B-1 non-immigrant visa (NIV) category. By and large, periods of stay in the United States under the B-1 visa category are brief and involve the conducting of business on the behalf of an employer which is located overseas. Trips that are made to the United States in this category cannot involve employment in the U.S.

The duration of authorized stay for a B-1 holder is decided by the immigration officer at the time of the B-1 holder's entry into the U.S. and usually ranges from one week to six months. However, the majority of the visits approved are for less than three months at a time and only in rare circumstances would an initial period of entry exceeding six months be granted. Additionally, as indicated above, B-1 holders are prohibited from engaging in employment in the United States. B-1 holders may change status to another non-immigrant status, like H-1, J-1, F-1 or B-2. However, one should be cautious when changing from B-1 status to another non-immigrant status. Using the B category as a stepping stone to a different non-immigrant status for the purpose of avoiding the more stringent application procedures associated with the new status is improper. The USCIS (the new name of the agency formerly known as the INS) considers such an act to be fraudulent, since the alien failed to disclose the actual reason for seeking the B-1 visa. In such instances, serious ramifications may result, such as exclusion and/or removal from the United States. In addition, such behavior could make it extremely difficult to obtain another visa for entry into the United States in the future.

A B-1 holder may apply to extend his/her status, if he/she needs to stay longer for business purposes. Moreover, at least in theory, a holder of a B-1 status may apply for an immigrant visa or status.

Zhang & Associates, P.C. can assist you in extending your B-1 status. If you are interested in extending your B-1 status, please click here.

For other information about Non-Immigrant Visas in general, please click here...


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