An Overview of Non-Immigrant Visas
Below is a list of all the various types of non-immigrant visas and brief qualifications of each:
H-1B: Temporary professional workers for a specialty occupation with at least a 4 year bachelor’s degree. Maximum stay of 6 years, but can lead to permanent residency.
H-2B: Seasonal workers permitted to enter the country for a short time to fill a need when American labor is unavailable.
H-4: Spouses and children of H-1B and H-2B immigrants are permitted to enter the country under an H-4 visa but are not allowed to work.
K-1: For the fiancé[e] of a U.S. citizen where the marriage will occur within 90 days.
K-3: For the spouse of a U.S. citizen while the application for a green card is pending.
L-1A/B: An international company with an existing presence in the United States may transfer a foreign employee to a local office with one of these visas. The L-1A is for executives, and the L-1B is for individuals with specialized knowledge. Spouse and children of employee may enter the U.S. on an L-2 but may not work.
O-1: Limited to individuals with extraordinary ability in arts, science, education, business, or athletics, with a record of great achievement and indisputably at the top of their field.
O-2: Assistants to O-1 visa holders in artistic or athletic events.
O-3: For the spouses and children of an O-1 or O-2 visa holder.
R-1: Religious workers entering the country on a temporary basis
R-2: For spouses and children of those entering the country with an R-1 visa.
TN-1/2: For Canadian (TN-1) and Mexican (TN-2) nationals to work in specific occupations. These visas have strict educational requirements. The spouses and dependents of these individuals must apply for TD visas to enter the country.
A-1/2/3: For diplomats, government officials, their families and attendants.
B-1: For individuals entering the United States who are briefly visiting for business purposes.
B-2: For individuals briefly visiting the United States for pleasure — also called tourist visas.
C: For travelers passing through the United States who don’t intend to enter the United States.
F-1: For individuals engaged in a full course of study at a U.S. institution — also called student visas. Individuals are not permitted to work when in the country on this visa. Spouses and children of F-1 visa recipients must apply for F-2 visas to enter the country.
J-1: For individuals participating in visitor exchange programs. Spouses and children of recipients must apply for J-2 visas to enter the country.
Q-1: Participants in inter