Why you might not be allowed to enter the US even if you have a visitor visa

Did you know that a visitor visa doesn’t guarantee you the right to enter the U.S. as a visitor?

If you want to come to the U.S. as a visitor (and you are not subject to the visa waiver program), simply go to a U.S. Consulate abroad and apply.  Keep in mind that the Consulate will presume that you, as a visitor visa applicant, are actually planning to immigrate to the U.S.  So, the only way you will be able to persuade the Consulate to grant your visitor visa applicant, is to convince them that you are not going to immigrate to the U.S. and that you have every intention of returning to your home country when your trip ends.

If you’re applying for a visitor visa, here are some things you can bring to the Consulate to support your visa application:

  • Proof that you have a job in your home country;
  • Evidence that you own real estate or assets in your home country;
  • Documentation showing that you have a spouse, children or other close family members who live in your home country.

A Visitor Visa Doesn’t Guaranty Entry into the U.S.

If the U.S. Consulate grants you a visitor visa, there is no guaranty that you will, in fact, be permitted to enter the U.S.  You must still convince immigration authorities–usually from Customs and Border Patrol– that the purpose of your trip to the U.S. is purely as a visitor.  Immigration authorities at the airport are not bound by the decision of the Consulate.  So, when you are asked at the airport “what is the purpose of your trip?” answer carefully.

If you would like to discuss this immigration issue further, or if you need help, advice or representation in other areas of immigration law, please call my Boston office today at 617-722-0005 to set up a consultation.