As a human resources professional, you're tasked with finding the right talent to help your company prosper. Many times you'll find the best candidate for the position close to home. However, as you work to fill higher-skilled positions, you may need to expand your search into the global job market, which adds a new, complex element to the hiring process — securing a work visa

Due to the nuances of each hiring situation and candidate, there are many different types of U.S. nonimmigrant visas available.

To help you understand the requirements for each visa type, we've created The ABCs of Immigration: The HR Guide to U.S. Immigration Visas and Green Cards a comprehensive overview of seven U.S. nonimmigrant visa types, as well as employment-based green cards.

The important details of each employment-based visa (e.g. H-1B, E-3, O-1) and green card category are covered in this guide, which is divided into two sections: visas meant for temporary stays in the U.S. and green cards intended for permanent residency.


The B-1 Temporary Business Visitor visa is commonly used for overseas contract negotiations by foreign nationals who need to enter the U.S. to attend or receive short-term training, to attend conferences or in-person consulting.


Who's Eligible

Foreign nationals who are entering the U.S. for business purposes are eligible for a B-1 visa. The B-1 does not allow for the foreign national to work in the U.S.

Business purposes can include the following: Attending meetings, trainings, seminars and negotiating contracts.

In order to qualify, the business person must have:

  • Funds to cover expenses throughout the stay
  • No compensation by a U.S. employer during the trip
  • Residence and country ties in the home country with no interest in abandoning those ties
  • Intent to leave the U.S. at the end of his or her visit

Visa Waiver Program

Citizens in select countries can travel to the U.S. for a stay of 90 days or less without a U.S. visa. In order to travel under the Visa Waiver Program, the traveler must have completed the Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA) process prior to the trip. Persons admitted under the Visa Waiver Program cannot extend or change their status while in the U.S. Participating countries include:


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