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Fact or Fiction for B-2 Visitors

Questions persist about the amount of time that a foreign national may be present in the U.S. as a “visitor.”  Our post today will focus on identifying some common statements we hear from clients regarding B-2 admissions and determining if those statements are fact or fiction.

Statement #1:
A visitor to the U.S. can’t stay more than an aggregate of 180 days in any given year.

FICTION.  There is no “180 day limit” on a B-2 admission.  The burden is on the applicant for admission to demonstrate that he:

  • is a bona fide visitor;
  • has no intention to abandon his foreign residence; and
  • has financial arrangements sufficient to carry out the purpose of the trip AND the return abroad.

Statement #2:
All the admitting officer needs to focus on is the amount of time an individual has previously spent in the U.S. to determine eligibility for admission as a visitor.

FICTION.  See answer above.  Additionally, this issue seems to arise frequently with our Canadian Snowbirds who travel to the U.S. where they own property for three to five months, return to Canada for a short period of time and re-apply for admission to the U.S.  Most CBP officials on our northern borders know there is no 180 day limit as a visitor.  Instead, officers evaluate specific facts concerning the purpose of the visit, the individual’s ties to their home country and their clear intent to return to their home country rather than remain in the U.S. indefinitely.

Statement #3:
If a CBP official decides that I am actually coming to the U.S. to remain here permanently, she can deny my entry as a visitor.

FACT.  B-2 visitor status is not intended to bridge a gap between to a permanent status in the U.S. such as Lawful Permanent Resident status.
Our website has many other informative articles regarding the B-1 and B-2 categories.  Following are a few:

If you would like more information coming to the U.S. from Southern Ontario or other points, contact us to arrange a consultation.