B-1 Temporary Business Visitor

You may be eligible for a B-1 visa if you will be participating in business activities of a commercial or professional nature in the United States, including, but not limited to:

  • Consulting with business associates
  • Traveling for a scientific, educational, professional or business convention, or a conference on specific dates
  • Settling an estate
  • Negotiating a contract
  • Participating in short-term training
  • Transiting through the United States: certain persons may transit the United States with a B-1 visa
  • Deadheading: certain air crewmen may enter the United States as deadhead crew with a B-1 visa

Eligibility Criteria

You must demonstrate the following in order to be eligible for a B-1 visa:

  • The purpose of your trip is to enter the United States for business of a legitimate nature
  • You plan to remain for a specific limited period of time
  • You have sufficient funds to cover the expenses of the trip and your stay in the United States
  • You have a residence outside the United States that you have no intention of abandoning, as well as other binding ties that will ensure your return abroad at the end of the visit
  • You are otherwise admissible to the United States

Application Process

For information on applying for a B-1 visa, see the “Department of State” link.

Aliens seeking a B-1 visa from certain countries may be able to enter the United States without a visa. For information about exemptions from the visa requirements, see the Customs & Border Protection page.

If you are in the United States in another valid nonimmigrant status, you may be eligible to change to B-1 status. To change to B-1 status, file a Form I-539, Application to Extend/Change Nonimmigrant Status. For more information, see the Change my Nonimmigrant Status page.

Period of Stay/Extension of Stay

 Initial Period of Stay  Extension of Stay
1 to 6 months; 6 months is the maximum Up to 6 months; maximum total amount of time permitted in B-1 status on any one trip is generally 1 year.

At the port of entry, an immigration official must authorize your admission to the United States, and, if you are eligible for admission, you may be admitted initially for the period necessary to carry out your business activities, up to a maximum period of 1 year. If you who wish to stay beyond the time indicated on the Form I-94 without departing from the United States, you must file Form I-539, Application to Extend/Change Nonimmigrant Status, and submit any required supporting documents to USCIS. For more information, see the Extend my Stay page.

Family of B-1 Visa Holders

Your spouse and children are not eligible for a dependent visa. Each of your dependents who will be accompanying or following to join you must apply separately for a B-2 visa and must follow the regulations for that visa.

B-1 Nonimmigrant Visitors for Business Who Are Personal/Domestic Servants or Employees of Foreign Airlines

Certain personal or domestic servants accompanying or following to join individuals in a B, E, F, H, I, J, L, or TN nonimmigrant classification, personal or domestic servants of U.S. citizens who have a permanent home or are stationed in a foreign country, as well as certain employees of foreign airlines, may be eligible for B-1 nonimmigrant status if their activities in the United States are in connection with their foreign employment. Such activities are not considered, for purposes of the B-1 classification, to be prohibited local “employment” or “labor for hire” within the United States.

While these B-1 nonimmigrants are not required to obtain an Employment Authorization Document (EAD) from USCIS before engaging in their approved B-1 activities, they may still receive an EAD upon request by filing Form I-765. Note, however, that if such persons engage in activities outside their B-1 nonimmigrant status, such as working for another employer in the United States, they will be found to have violated their B-1 nonimmigrant status. They also may not remain in the United States for longer than the authorized period of stay in B-1 nonimmigrant status.

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