Overall, a foreign national applying for a visa with the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will either seek a nonimmigrant visa for a temporary visit or an immigrant visa for lawful permanent residence (green card).
The B visa category encompasses applicants who want to enter the country temporarily for several reasons, such as business-related purposes (B-1 visa), pleasure (B-2 visa), or distinct purposes combined (B-1/B-2 status).
Visitors under B-2 status have limitations in which type of activities they can engage in lawfully. In this article, you will discover what you can do on a B-2 visa when visiting the United States.
What Can You Do on a B2 Visa? – As Provided by Law
Section 101(a)(15)(B) of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) provides that foreign nationals seeking to enter the United States under B-2 status cannot engage in certain activities, which are:
- Full-time study (e.g., obtaining a college degree)
- Performing skilled or unskilled labor
- Working as a representative of foreign information media, film, or any press-related labor, or engaging in a similar work
Additionally, the same regulation provides that the B-2 visa applicants must prove they have a residence abroad which they have no intention to leave and move out of their home countries.
What Can You Do on a B2 Visa? – Taking a Closer Look
According to regulations established by the US Department of State Foreign Affairs Manual (FAM), the main uses for the B-2 visa are for tourism or family-related traveling. Still, other purposes may justify a temporary stay in the United States under B-2 status.
Tourism, Vacation, and Holidays
The most common reason to get a B-2 visa is traveling to America to visit a tourist location (e.g., Mount Rushmore), make social visits to relatives or even friends living in the United States.
Undergoing Medical Treatment
Many foreign nationals apply for a B-2 visa not only to indulge in traveling but also to undergo health purposes in US-based facilities.
The B-2 visa also encompasses foreign nationals who want to enter the United States to participate in social events hosted by fraternal, social, or services organizations, such as conventions and conferences.
Armed Forces Dependents
Under B-2 status, it is possible to enter the United States as the dependent of an alien member of any branch of the US Armed Forces. The visa serves for dependents accompanying the principal that is temporarily assigned in the United States.
Dependents of Crewmen
The dependent of a foreign national under D status (also known as “crewman visa”) may also obtain a B-2 visa solely for accompanying the principal during his/her stay in the United States.
Amateur Entertainers and Athletes
The B-2 visa allows foreign nationals to enter the United States to participate in amateur musical concerts, sports, or similar events/contests – as long as the visa holder is not being paid for participating.
Engaging in Short Courses of Study
Under B-2 status, a foreign national may enter the United States to enroll in a short recreational course of study. It is crucial to note the visitor’s visa will be marked “study incidental to visit,” waiving Form I-20 (Certificate of Eligibility for Nonimmigrant Student Status).
Do You Want to Visit the United States Under B2 Status? – Work with an Expert Immigration Immediately
With a decade of experience helping clients succeed in their visa applications, Attorney Romy B. Jurado is willing to help you as well. Waste no time – contact us today by calling (305) 921-0976 or emailing Romy@juradolawfirm.com to schedule a consultation.