B-1/B-2 Visa Frequently Asked Questions

What is a visitor visa, and who needs one?

A visitor visa is a temporary U.S. visa that allows foreign nationals to enter the United States for specific purposes, such as tourism, business meetings, medical treatment, or visiting family and friends. Not all travelers require a visitor visa; citizens of certain countries are eligible for the Visa Waiver Program (VWP) and can visit the U.S. for up to 90 days without a visa.

What is the difference between a B-1 and B-2 visa?

A B-1 visa is for business travelers who are coming to the U.S. for purposes like meetings, negotiations, and conferences. A B-2 visa is for tourists or individuals seeking medical treatment in the U.S.

How do I apply for a visitor visa (B-1/B-2)?

To apply for a visitor visa, you typically need to:

Complete the online non-immigrant visa application (Form DS-160).

Pay the visa application fee.

Schedule and attend a visa interview at a U.S. embassy or consulate in your home country.

Provide supporting documents, such as proof of ties to your home country, travel itinerary, and financial resources.

What is the maximum duration of stay on a B-1/B-2 visa?

Initially, B-1 and B-2 visas are often issued for a duration of 12 months, but the actual duration of stay allowed by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) at the port of entry may vary. Extensions may be possible in certain cases. Can I extend my B-1/B-2 visa stay in the U.S.? It is possible to apply for an extension of your B-1 or B-2 visa status if you have a valid reason for an extended stay, but you must apply before your current status expires.

Can I work or study on a B-1/B-2 visa?

No, a B-1/B-2 visa does not allow you to work or enroll in academic courses in the U.S. You must obtain the appropriate visa or status for those purposes, but a B-1 allows you to enter the US to attend meetings, interviews, start a business, and negotiate contracts.

Can I change my status to another visa category while in the U.S. on a B-1/B-2 visa?

In some cases, it may be possible to change your status from a B-1/B-2 visa to another visa category while in the U.S., but you must meet the eligibility criteria and apply for the change of status with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).

Can I visit family and friends in the U.S. on a visitor visa?

Yes, you can visit family and friends in the U.S. on a B-2 visitor visa. However, you must comply with the terms of your visa, which do not allow for long-term or permanent residence in the U.S.

Can I use a visitor visa to attend a job interview in the U.S.?

While attending a job interview in the U.S. is a valid purpose for a B-1 visa, you must be careful not to engage in actual work without the appropriate work visa.

Can I apply for a visitor visa if I have been previously denied?

Yes, you can reapply for a visitor visa even if you have been previously denied. However, it’s important to address the reasons for the previous denial and ensure that your new application is well-prepared and supported by strong documentation.

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Nat Mohan
Nat Mohan
I've had the pleasure of working with DLG on various petitions over the past few years. US immigration could be quite complex and overwhelming making knowledgeable, trustworthy help critical to successfully navigate through the process. The team at DLG (Dana, Leyla, Jennifer, Melisa) are extremely knowledgeable, thorough, patient, transparent and responsive. Definitely recommend them!!
Kai-Wen Yang
Kai-Wen Yang
Appreciate the Davidson Law Group for helping me secure approval for my H1b visa. The paralegal working with me was very responsive in answering the questions I had (usually always responded to my messages the day of my inquiry) and the answers were always detailed and professional. Would recommend working with the law group!
Excellent immigration team!
Priyadarshani Ghorpade
Priyadarshani Ghorpade
Liviu Mosnoi
Liviu Mosnoi
I had an amazing experience with Davidson Law Group for my immigration case. Their team was incredibly professional, knowledgeable, and attentive, making the entire process smooth and successful. I highly recommend them to anyone needing expert immigration legal support.
Chinmay Warang
Chinmay Warang
To the entire Davidson Law Group team, thank you so much for all the support during the past three years of my immigration journey in the US. They were especially supportive and responsive to all my queries about the different visas and were always prompt and kind. I especially appreciated it when Leyla got back to me beyond working hours on a Friday with, "Congratulations, your H1B has been picked." It definitely made my and my close ones' weekend a tad better. I would recommend them for sure just because I appreciated their humane approach to all of their cases. Kudos to all of you.

Dana Davidson - Full Bio

Dana T. Davidson holds degrees from the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law and State University of New York at Stony Brook and has been practicing immigration law since 2003 in New York and nationwide. She represents corporations, individuals, and families in a broad range of immigration matters. Attorney Davidson has offices in New York City and Glen Cove.


  • Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law, Yeshiva University, New York, New York
  • Juris Doctor – 1988
  • Honors: Moot Court Board, Member, Judge
  • State University of New York at Stony Brook, Stony Brook, New York
  • Bachelor of Arts – 1982
  • Major: Political Science
  • Concentration: Business

Pro-Bono Activities

  • Safe Passage Project, Volunteer Attorney, 2013-Present
  • Educating the Educators, Founder, 2012-Present
  • Momentum Project, Board Member, 1991-1994 Bar Admission
  • New York, Eastern District
  • New York, Southern District
  • Washington, D.C.

Speaking Engagements
  • AILA RDC-EMEA Spring Conference 2018, Berlin, Germany, Speaker on “Public Charge” panel
  • AILA RDC-EMEA Fall Conference 2018, Johannesburg, South Africa, Speaker: “Practice Management in the New Age” panel
  • AILA RDC-EMEA Spring Conference 2018, Madrid, Spain, Speaker: “El Traje de Luces: Self-Sponsored Petitions – EB-1A and NIW”  AILA RDC-EMEA Spring Conference 2017, Brussels, Belgium, Speaker: “Continuing Blanket L Challenges”
  • Safe Passage Project, March 2017, Speaker: “Representing Unaccompanied Minors: Special Immigrant Juvenile Status and the Effects of President Trump’s Executive Orders on Immigration”
  • AILA RDC-EMEA Fall Conference 2016, Speaker: “It’s Not About Money: I-864”
  • AILA RDC-EMEA Spring Conference 2016, Vienna, Austria, Speaker: “K-Visa: Differences Between K-1 and I-130 Processing”
  • New York Institute of Technology’s Center for Entrepreneurship, January 2016, Entrepreneur/Executive-in-Residence
  • AILA Fall Conference 2015, London, UK, Speaker: Impact of joint sponsors on family-based cases
  • Goldman-Sachs 10,000 Small Business Education Program, October 2014, “What is required to grow a business?”
  • Dowling College, May 2013, Keynote Speaker at the first annual Latino Summit at Dowling College
  • International Taxation Conference, 2010