What Type of Visa Do I Need?

Thu, Mar 03, 2016 at 9:25PM

When it comes to immigration or travel into the US, a visa is one of the most basic parts of the process—but for many people, it can also be one of the most confusing. With so many different types of visas, it can certainly be difficult to know what type you need and how it works. In today’s blog, we hope to clear up the confusion by breaking down the different categories of visas available.

Immigrant visas

Are you looking to live in the US permanently—to make it your home? In this case, you will be applying for an immigrant visa. Securing an immigrant visa is a multi-step process, which will typically include sponsorship and petition process, an interview, and other steps.

Immigrant visas come in multiple categories, and can include…

•    Spouse of a US citizen, for those who have married current US citizens and wish to live permanently in the US.
•    Intercountry adoption of orphan children by US citizens, for those who have adopted a child from a foreign country.
•    Employment-based immigrants, for immigrants coming to the US to live and work on a permanent basis. This category can include priority workers, professionals holding advanced degrees, and more.

Nonimmigrant visas

As their name implies, nonimmigrant visas differ from immigrant visas in that they are for those looking to reside on a temporary basis in the US. If you’re traveling, working or visiting for any non-permanent reason, this type of visa is for you—however, there are many different subcategories that will depend on your specific needs and intentions. They include…

•    Business visitor, a category for those international travelers coming to the US for business reasons.
•    Media/journalist, for those coming to the US to cover stories in the country.
•    Professor, scholar, teacher (exchange visitor), a category for those educators who will be teaching in the US on a temporary basis.
•    Tourism, vacation, pleasure visitor, the category for those coming to the US on vacation and other recreational trips.

It is important to note that these categories are just a brief sample of all the categories involved in the visa process. Each requires its own specifications and corresponding form and application process, so be sure to find the one that’s right for you (you can visit state.gov to find more detailed information on the different types).

As you can see, visas come in all types—and which one you apply for depends on your needs and current situation. While it may seem tricky at first, navigating the visa process does not have to be difficult. Call our office today for help in selecting the right visa, applying and much more.


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