Many of your foreign national clients who are looking to invest in real estate or businesses as part of their immigration strategy initially enter the United States with a B-2 Visitor Visa. The B-2 Visa allows them to make certain business and investment transactions, however the term is limited to six months. The advantage of fling for an extension of a B-2 Visa is that it will extend the foreign national’s status in the United States to give him more time to change his status to a different working class visa.
We recently had a client from Tampa who was on the last 30 days of his B-2 status. Like many in his situation, he waited until the last minute to come in to see me. We quickly filed for an extension of his B-2 visa in order to buy him some time while he concluded his investment process. It is important to know that there is no guarantee that the B-2 extension will be granted as the applicant has been here for six months and is now asking for more time.
A short time later, we received a Request for Evidence from the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), which asked for bank statements as proof of how the applicant would be able to support himself during the extended stay. It also requested a signed statement of the applicant’s intent to depart the United States upon termination of his legal status here.
Just this week, we received an approval notice granting him B-2 status until October, which gives us six additional months to prepare and submit a petition to change his status to that of an E-2 Treaty Investor Visa based on his investment in a U.S. business.
When you are working with foreign national clients who are investing in U.S. businesses or real property, it is imperative that they maintain some legal status within the United States.
As always, please feel free to contact me if you have any questions on this or other legal issues.
Don Gonzalez, Esq.