Visas which allow a foreign national to enter to the United States for the purpose of conducting negotiations, execution of contracts certain employment categories and other entrepreneurial functions may be classified as business visas.
Business Visas may include: L-1A Intracompany transferees, O-1 persons of extraordinary ability, E-2 non-immigrant investment visa, H-1B employment in specialty occupations, H-2A agricultural workers, H-2B certain business employees or P-1 Athletic or entertainment.
Except for the H-1B the other business based visas have been discussed previously. The H-1B visa allows an employer in the United States to temporarily employ a foreign national in a specialty occupation which requires the employee at the minimum hold a 4-year college degree or above. The applicant for this visa must establish that they have a 4 year or higher degree obtained in the United States or the equivalent degree from a foreign university.
The H-1B applicant, upon approval, will be admitted to the United States for an initial period of 3 years and may upon application receive an extension for an additional 3 years for a total of 6 years. During the employment period, it may be possible that the individual could obtain a labor certification from the department of labor which may provide a path to permanent residency.
We must note that a B-1 business visa is available to those persons seeking to enter the United States for certain business reasons. We want to remind those individuals that they cannot perform any work in the United States where they are receiving remuneration from the US based corporation or business. They may work in the United States for a foreign company where they are paid by that foreign company into a foreign bank account. The initial period of admission would be for a total of 6 months with possible extensions of stay.
In most circumstances, immediate family members, spouse and children under the age of 21 will be authorized to accompany the applicant and will be admitted for the same period. In certain circumstances spouses of L-1A’s and E-2’s may be authorized to apply for employment authorization from USCIS. In most other cases, they will not be authorized to work.