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US Consulate

B-1 Visitor Visa

B1/B2 Visitor Visa is a non immigrant visa for foreign nationals entering the U.S. temporarily for business (B1), or for pleasure/ medical treatment (B2). This visa is normally issued up to a period of 3 months to 10years. While you are in the US, you may extend your stay for an additional six months, provided you obtain the approval from the USCIS.

Consulate defines the qualification for granting the visitor visa as follows:

"Applicants for visitor visas must show that they qualify under provisions of the Immigration and Nationality Act. The presumption in the law is that every visitor visa applicant is an intending immigrant.

Therefore, applicants for visitor visas must overcome this presumption by demonstrating that:

A) The purpose of their trip is to enter the U.S. for business, pleasure, or medical treatment

B) They plan to remain for a specific, limited period

C) They have a residence outside the U.S. as well as other binding ties which will ensure their return to their country at the end of the visit. "

B-1 Visa Eligibility

Business professionals to participate in commercial transactions (which do not involve gainful employment) such as negotiating contracts and consulting with business associates

Persons to attend professional or business conferences, workshops, or seminars

Business professionals to explore possibilities to set up a subsidiary of a foreign corporation, or to make investments

Technical personnel to install or service equipment pursuant to a contract of sale, or to provide after sales service

Business professionals to attend meetings as a member of the Board of Directors of a U.S. corporation

Persons to observe business, professional, or vocational activity as long as it does not involve any hands-on activity

Professional athletes to compete for tournament money and not for a salary

Professional to have business consultations with business associates in the U.S.

Foreign employer’s authorized agent to procure goods, components or raw materials for use outside the U.S.

Foreign business persons coming to the U.S. in conjunction with Litigation

U.S. companies to bring foreign business consultants for training or expert advice

U.S. universities to bring foreign guest speakers or lecturers

What you must to know about B-1 visa:

Business visa (B-1) is meant for business purpose only.

Legally, B-1 visa holder is not allowed to work in the USA
B-1 visa holder can rent an apartment on B-1 visa.

You can open a bank account by showing proof of your identity (passport).

You can get the ATM or debit card, from the bank in which you have opened your account, but not a credit card. Though most places ATM card can be used.

You can rent a car, only if you have a valid driving license from your country (IDP or State Driving License). However, some US states insist on having an IDP (International Driving Permit).

Initially you can drive in any US state on your IDP or State driving license, for a limited period of time. Rules vary from state to state. Confirm this from your local DMV office.

You can't join any educational institute on B-1 visa.

You can get a telephone/ cable connection installed in your apartment.

You cannot convert B-1 to H-1 status, while you are in USA.

B-1 visa can be extended for the maximum of total 1 year stay in USA.

You are not liable to pay any taxes on your allowances, since it is not a salary.

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