Other US Visas

There are two categories of visas, non-immigrant visas and immigrant visas. In this page we will review the different VISAs within each category.

Please note that is you are Irish or from the UK you can get an ESTA online for trips up to 90 days. This is the most convenient way to get authorization to travel to the US.

Non-immigrant Visas

The various types of non-immigrant visas are listed below, with details.

  • Visitor and tourism: This is the B-2 visitor non-immigrant visa. It is for people who want to travel to the United States temporarily, either for the purpose of visiting friends or family, or tourism. There are some specific activities that can be conducted on the B-2 visa such as being an amateur entertainer, medical treatment, short courses of study and amateur athletics.
  • Business: This is the B-1 non-immigrant visa for people who wish to travel to the United States temporarily for the purpose of business, consultations with business associates, contract negotiations, participation in business or professional seminars, conferences or conventions, and any other legal activities associated with a professional or commercial nature. This visa does not allow for paid employment or creative activities like operating a trade or working as a consultant. The activities that could be associated with this visa include selling, business venture research, speaking engagements, conferences or voluntary work.
  • Temporary Employment: This visa type is for people who want to work in the United States for a short period of time. You are not allowed to work in the United States on a business or visitor visa, or under the Visa Waiver Program (VWP).
    Unlike other countries, the government of United States will not issue a work visa for informal employment. Basically, the work visas are founded on specific offers of employment. A formal request is usually filed and permitted by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) ahead of the visa application at the United States Consulate or Embassy.
    In a case where your children, who are under the age of 21, your spouse and/or partner wish to go with you for the length of your stay, they may be eligible to apply for a derivative visa.
  • Treaty Investor or Treaty Trader: Treaty Investor visa (E-2) and Treaty Trader visas are a type of non-immigrant visa, they are for citizens of other countries with whom the United States maintains a treaty of navigation and commerce. Applicants ought to be coming to the United States for the purpose of engaging in extensive business, as well as trade in technology or services, mainly between the treaty country and the United states (E-1); or to direct and build up the operations of a venture where the applicant has invested or is about to invest a large sum in terms of capital or assets. (E-2)
    The purpose of this visa was to aid and improve interactions economically between the treaty countries and the United States. It is not for the purpose of foreigners to simply reside in the United States.
  • Study and Exchange: This is a non-immigrant visa for people who wish to come and study in the United States; they would require either an F-1 or M-1 student’s visa, depending on the type of study (academic or vocational).
    Students who want to take part in an exchange program, and also students who want to take up approved employment, research or training under a formally permitted program sponsored by a non-profit or educational institution, would require an exchange visitor visa (J-1).
    In a case where your children who are under the age of 21, your spouse and/or partner wish to go with you for the length of your stay, they may be able to apply for a derivative visa.
  • International Organisation, Diplomats and NATO Employees: This is the visa type a diplomat or other government official would require, dependent on the purpose for coming to the United States.
    Officials of the Government coming to the United States to carry out non-governmental activities of a commercial nature or coming for tourism would require the appropriate L, H or B visa, or if eligible, visa free travel under the Visa Waiver Program.

Immigrant Visas

The following are the types of immigrant visas available in the United States:

  • Family Immigration: If you want to relocate to the United States for an indefinite period, you will be required to apply for an immigrant visa, whether you wish to work or not.
    Under the United States Visa laws, there is no provision for immigration eligibility due to retirement. Family relations cannot file a petition for immigration on your behalf.
  • Fiancée Visa: To marry a citizen of the United States in the United States and reside there indefinitely afterwards, a fiancée visa would be required. To know if you are qualified to apply for this visa:
    • You must be lawfully free to get married to your fiancé;
    • The marriage must take place in 90 days of your arrival to the United States on this visa.

    If you are qualified for the fiancée visa, a filed petition would be required on behalf of you with the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).
    Note: if you will not be residing in the United States, but will continue to work and live in another country after the marriage, you are required to apply for a B-2 visa, or if you qualify for the visa free travel under the VWP.
  • Employment Immigration: This immigration type is separated into five (5) categories. Most times, you will be required to obtain a job offer from an employer based in the United State, to qualify. The categories are first preference, second preference, third preference, fourth preference and fifth preference.
  • Returning Residents Visa: Conditional residents or lawful permanent residents who have been outside the United States for more than 12 months or 2 years if they possess a re-entry permit, are qualified for a returning resident status, as long as they meet the specified requirements.
  • Diversity Visa Program: Every year a Diversity Immigration Program, normally referred to as visa lottery, randomly selects 55,000 immigrant visas to individuals from countries with low rates of immigration to the United States. Qualification for this program is by the individual’s location of birth. The registration is done online every autumn. Registration can only be done online during the official period of registration.

That completes our brief rundown of other US Visas.

If you would like to apply for an ESTA then get start the process with us today!