Nonimmigrants, unlike immigrants, enter the U.S. for a temporary period of time and are restricted to the activity consistent with their visas. A variety of temporary visas are available to foreign citizens, permitting them to stay in the United States for a limited time and purpose. However, most Canadian citizens and many citizens from Visa Waiver Program countries can come to the United States without a visa if they meet certain requirements.
The visa, placed in your passport when issued, allows you to travel to a U.S. port-of-entry (airport, for example) and request permission of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Customs and Border Protection immigration officer to enter the United States. Bear in mind, however, that a visa does not guarantee entry into the United States. The application procedure often requires consular processing. In limited instances, a change of status while inside the United States is also an option.
International travelers come to the U.S. for a wide variety of reasons, including tourism, business, medical treatment and certain types of temporary work. The type of visa needed is defined by immigration law, and relates to the principal purpose of your travel.
The optimal visa option in your case may vary depending on your particular circumstances and situation. To determine the best course of action in your individual case, please contact our office to schedule a free consultation.
The most commonly encountered temporary visa options are listed to the left. Even if the issues in your case are not specifically referenced on our website, please contact us to inquire about our professional assistance.