Elizabeth C. Pines, P.A. Attorney at Law


What is a Visa?

A Visa is an official document appended to a passport which allows entry into a particular country. An American visa is issued outside of the United States and currently requires your photograph. The two main types of visas are: Immigrant Visas for Permant Residency, which allow the alien to live and work indefinitely in the United States, and the Non-Immigrant Visas, which allow the alien to visit or work in the United States temporarily.

Note: The information on this site is intended for general information only. It cannot be used in lieu of legal advice. You must consult an attorney to obtain specific advice on the subject or on your particular case.





H-1B Visa
A U.S. Company/Employer uses the H-1B visa to obtain authorization to employ foreign professionals. The employment opportunity offer must be a specialty occupation that requires a Bachelor’s Degree or its equivalent.

Requirements:
- The employment opportunity must require a university Bachelor's Degree, or the equivalent
- The foreign professional must be qualified to fill the position
- The employment opportunity must qualify as a specialty occupation
- The foreign professional must document that he/she has a state license to practice the job duties when a license is required.
- The company or the individual that requires the services of the foreign worker must be American and possess a Federal Identification Number/Social Security Number.


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H-2 Visa
American companies use the H-2 category for temporary workers in the area of agriculture during harvest season and for temporary workers for other services, provided they prove that there are not enough U.S. workers to perform the work necessary during a “high season.”

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H-3 Visa
A temporary worker may be invited by an individual or an American company to receive training which is not available in his/her own country. This type of visa does not include medical training.

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L-1 Visa
International companies that have an American subsidiary or are affiliated with an American company and want to transfer a high profile executive to provide the same services in the United States may use the L-1A visa. L-1B visas are for specialized workers in the company. These individuals must have been employed at least one year at the company abroad.

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K-1 Visa
The K-1 Visa allows the fiancé(e) of an American citizen to enter the United States for a 90-day period in order to marry the American citizen and apply for a change of status to Permanent Resident. The fiancé’s dependents may enter the United States with a K-2 Visa.

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E Visa
This Visa category is based on commercial agreements with the United States and certain countries. In order to qualify for this visa a foreign worker must be a national of one of these countries and the petitioner U.S. Company must be 50% owned by a national of the particular country. This company must establish business between the U.S. and the beneficiary country or must develop a project with a substantial investment from the beneficiary. The beneficiary can qualify for this Visa as the investor or the essential worker for the operation.

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F-1, M Visa
The foreign national may use the F Visa to enter the United States for the purpose of taking an academic course of study. The M Visa is for studies at a vocational college. To acquire this type of visa (F or M) from an American Embassy the student must have the I-20 A-B/M-N form from the school/college offering the course in the United States and documentation of his/her financial status. The student must provide evidence of sufficient funds for payment of the course and for sustaining him/herself without seeking employment in the US as well as evidence of the return to his/her original country once the course is completed.

Spouse and members of the family can enter the United States with an F-2 visa.

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B-1 Visa
The B-1 Visa is for foreigners who want to come to the United States to do business temporarily. The term “business” refers to conventions, conferences or other legitimate activities that have a commercial or professional purpose. To qualify for this Visa the applicant must prove that he/she is going to maintain his/her residence in their country of origin and is going to enter theUnited States for a limited period of time. The usual maximum time of stay in the U.S. with this visa is three months.


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B-2 Visa
The B-2 Visa is for foreigners who enter the United States for the purpose of tourism, visiting family members, friends or for health reasons.The applicants for this Visa must show proof of residence in his/her country of origin with no intentions of abandoning it. Evidence may be provided by ties to the country of origin and/or family. The usual maximum time of stay with this visa is six months.


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R Visa
The R Visa is for individuals in religious occupations that wish to enter the United States to perform services for a religious organization of which they have been members for a period of at least two years prior to submitting the application.

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TN-NAFTA Visa
The TN Visa is for Canadian or Mexican professionals who enter the United States to work for an American company providing specific services.

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Elizabeth C. Pines, P.A. Attorney at Law | 2811 SW 3rd Ave. | Miami, FL 33129 | Tel: 305-576-1115 | epines@pineslaw.com