B-2 Visa for Pleasure, Tourism, Medical Treatment

Overview

A citizen of a foreign country generally must first obtain either a nonimmigrant visa for temporary stay, or an immigrant visa for permanent residence.   A person who wants to enter the United States temporarily for business (B-1), for pleasure, or for medical treatment (B-2) typically would require a “visitor” visa.  At times, a combination of both (B-1/B-2) may also be given to a beneficiary. 

A B-2 visa would be issued to an individual intending to enter the U.S. for the purposes that are recreational in nature, including tourism, vacation (holiday), amusement, visits with family or relatives, rest, medical treatment, activities of a fraternal, social, or service nature, and participation by amateurs, who will receive no remuneration, in musical, sports and similar events or contents.  This visa is even appropriate for those who want to take a short course of study which is recreational (and not for credit towards a degree), and the course is less than 18 hours per week. 

Visa Procedure & Requirements

In order to obtain a B Visa, an applicant need to:

  • Apply for a visa at the U.S. Consulate; an application to the US Citizenship & Immigration Service is not required;
  • Document that the trip to the United States is for specific, limited period;
  • Document evidence of funds to cover expenses in the United States;
  • Citizens of Visa Waiver Program (VWP) countries for temporary visits to the United States of 90 days or less can request a waiver of B visa at the port of entry if they meet the visa waiver program requirements.

Related Issues

  • The presumption in the law is that every visitor visa applicant is an intending immigrant; 
  • The applicant for a visitor’s visa has to document that s/he is not an intending immigrant though evidence of compelling social and economic ties to abroad; 
  • The applicant should have a residence outside the United States s/he has no intent to abandon.