US IMMIGRATION LAW
The way to enter the United States either to visit the
United States or to remain in the United States for work, business or
to join a family member or for other purposes, is by obtaining a Visa
at a United States Embassy or consulate in a foreign country for this
purpose. The Vice Counsel or Visa Officer in the United States Embassy
or Consulate in the foreign country makes a decision on whether the Visa
Applicant has satisfied the requirements for the particular visa applied
for, and if so, issues the visa.
Visas are divided into 2 categories, Non Immigrant and Immigrant Visas.
Each of these general categories have various separate sub categories.
The Non Immigrant Visas categories include visas for tourists and visas
for work or doing business in the US. Although visitor visas are issued
only for a short period, business and work non immigrant visas can extend
over many years and sometimes indefinitely. However these work and business
visas are employer specific or business specific i.e. the visa holder
is permitted to engage only in the activity that was specifically approved,
and if he wishes to change his business or work, he must obtain the consent
of the United States Government.
Immigrant visas are, on the other hand, for permanent residence in the
United States. The holder of an Immigrant Visa can engage in any work
or any business in the United States. Ordinarily, after 5 years of being
a permanent resident in the United States, the immigrant is entitled to
apply for United States citizenship. Immigrant visas can be obtained either
through having a close family member in the United States or through the
petition of a United States employer needing the applicant in the United
States to work in the United States company. It can also be obtained through
the grant of asylum or refugee status in the United States, through investment
in the United States or through winning an annual Visa Lottery, a scheme
that permits nationals from countries with low immigration rates to the
United States to immigrate to the United States.
Although a few visas, such as Visitor visas can be applied for directly
at the United States Embassy or Consulate in the foreign country, almost
all visas require application to be made in the United States through
the United States Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services. Each
visa application has to comport to a separate set of legal requirements
and the requirements tend to be complex and legally specific to each visa
category. Therefore it is essential that a good and experienced attorney
be engaged to prepare the case to be forwarded to the United States Government
department. This cannot be done by an Attorney in a foreign country who
is not well versed with United States immigration law.
We are uniquely placed to be of assistance to you in all areas of United
States Immigration law.