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B-2 Advice Needed

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Hello!

First of all, big THANKS to anyone who take the time to read, consider, and advise on our situation here. :)

My boyfriend Arnold (from the Netherlands) and I are just beginning our Visa Journey, and trying to figure out the easiest and FASTEST way to bring him to the States on a long-term (hopefully - eventually - permanent!) basis.

A little backstory: we met online in February, 2010, and have been "together" through Skype webcam nearly 24 hours a day, even while we sleep, practically since we met. He came for a 3 week visit (May 29 - June 19), during which we realized we seem to be meant for each other, and we've decided to take the big steps necessary to be able to live together here.

Later this month, I will be flying over to spend about 6 weeks with him in the Netherlands, and after that, our hopeful tentative plan will be for him to fly back home to the States with me, on or around August 29th.

On his recent visit, the visa thing wasn't an issue, since the Netherlands is part of the Visa Waiver Program, and we knew his visit would be temporary.

However, at this point we'd like him to be able to stay here in the States for an extended period of time - even permanently, if it's possible - so we've spent the last couple weeks researching any and all visa options. We're both totally new to the entire concept of international travel, so it's been quite overwhelming to try to understand so many processes and regulations... I hope I'm at the right place for some help and answers.

The big question: Is the B-2 visa our best (and fastest!) option?

... and the little questions:

In general, how long does it take to apply for and receive a B-2 visa?

I've been searching for a timeline for the B-2 but haven't found any answers. We're hoping this would be possible to have by our target date of returning to the States, August 29th.

Is the B-2 visa able to be extended?

Although Arnold is from the Netherlands, covered by the Visa Waiver Program, we want a visa that will allow him to be in the US for longer than 90 days, or is possible to file for an extension to allow him to be here as long as absolutely possible.

If Arnold came on a B-2 visa, would he be able to attend a job interview?

Our initial plan for the easiest way to get a visa was through an employment transfer. His boss at Staples Office Center in the Netherlands originally told him he would easily be able to transfer him to the Staples closest to where I live here in the US, but we've recently found out that an international transfer is not possible. However, his boss was happy to fax a letter of recommendation to the US Staples, and I personally called and spoke to that General Manager, who assured me that if the (mandatory) interview with Arnold went well, he would definitely be hired, "no question about it". However, we're talking about a job at Staples here, so with many qualified Americans already needing jobs as it is, we obviously realize that no General Manager of a Staples is going to go out of his way to make the first move of petitioning for a Dutch guy to come fill the part-time opening; rather, Arnold is going to have to make the first move.

Now, we realize that the B-2 visa is for the purpose of pleasure travel, and that he will need a special visa or authorization to actually be legally employed here in the States, so my next question is...

If Arnold came on a B-2 visa, is it possible (and how difficult would it be) to adjust the status (or switch the type of visa?) to that with which he may be legally employed in a retail job? And how long would this process take?

And I'd also like to mention here that we've considered other types of visa - specifically, the K-1 (although being a self-employed photographer, I'm certain I will fail the Affidavit of Support form, and not sure if I could find a co-sponsor), not to mention we do NOT want to WAIT 5 to 12 months for that entire process before we can begin our lives together.

We've also considered employment-based visas, especially when we were planning on the employment transfer through Staples, but Arnold doesn't have any college degrees or specialized technical skills that would put him in high demand, that an employer would petition for on his behalf. I don't mean for that to sound negative in any way, but I'm trying to be realistic - employers aren't going to jump through visa hoops when there are Americans with the same qualifications already needing the available retail jobs, right? :(

So, for the moment, we're under the impression that the B-2 visa (IF it's extendable, and IF it's possible to adjust the status and be authorized to work) would be our best plan. Truly, the bottom line is finding a way for Arnold to be able to stay here as long as possible, with the ability to be legally employed. We're prepared to do whatever it takes to be together.

I appologize for the lengthy post. Any and all advice, thoughts, and comments are appreciated - THANK YOU in advance! :)


AOS from Marriage on B2 ~ Full & Detailed Timeline in My Profile

  • Married in Las Vegas - 5.11.11
  • Greencard received - 11.18.11
  • Removing of Conditions - package mailed 10.9.13
  • Greencard received - 1.23.14
  • Naturalization - package mailed 4.26.16
  • Oath ceremony - 3.28.17
  • Petition Alien Relative (Father Abroad) - package mailed 7.14.17
  • Check cashed - 7.21.17
  • NOA1 (I-797C receipt dated 7.18) received - 7.27.17
  • NOA2 (approval, dated 1.31) received - 2.5.18

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Filed: Lift. Cond. (apr) Country: India
Timeline

Using the B-2 to enter with the intention of getting married and adjusting your status to a PR is visa fraud and is illegal.

And no, he can't work on a tourist visa. That is also a violation of the visa.

Your fastest and quickest bet would be the K-1. Being apart sucks but we all deal(t) with it.


03/27/2009: Engaged in Ithaca, New York.
08/17/2009: Wedding in Calcutta, India.
09/29/2009: I-130 NOA1
01/25/2010: I-130 NOA2
03/23/2010: Case completed.
05/12/2010: CR-1 interview at Mumbai, India.
05/20/2010: US Entry, Chicago.
03/01/2012: ROC NOA1.
03/26/2012: Biometrics completed.
12/07/2012: 10 year card production ordered.

09/25/2013: N-400 NOA1

10/16/2013: Biometrics completed

12/03/2013: Interview

12/20/2013: Oath ceremony

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Filed: K-1 Visa Country: England
Timeline

Hello!

First of all, big THANKS to anyone who take the time to read, consider, and advise on our situation here. :)

My boyfriend Arnold (from the Netherlands) and I are just beginning our Visa Journey, and trying to figure out the easiest and FASTEST way to bring him to the States on a long-term (hopefully - eventually - permanent!) basis.

A little backstory: we met online in February, 2010, and have been "together" through Skype webcam nearly 24 hours a day, even while we sleep, practically since we met. He came for a 3 week visit (May 29 - June 19), during which we realized we seem to be meant for each other, and we've decided to take the big steps necessary to be able to live together here.

Later this month, I will be flying over to spend about 6 weeks with him in the Netherlands, and after that, our hopeful tentative plan will be for him to fly back home to the States with me, on or around August 29th.

On his recent visit, the visa thing wasn't an issue, since the Netherlands is part of the Visa Waiver Program, and we knew his visit would be temporary.

However, at this point we'd like him to be able to stay here in the States for an extended period of time - even permanently, if it's possible - so we've spent the last couple weeks researching any and all visa options. We're both totally new to the entire concept of international travel, so it's been quite overwhelming to try to understand so many processes and regulations... I hope I'm at the right place for some help and answers.

The big question: Is the B-2 visa our best (and fastest!) option?

... and the little questions:

In general, how long does it take to apply for and receive a B-2 visa?

I've been searching for a timeline for the B-2 but haven't found any answers. We're hoping this would be possible to have by our target date of returning to the States, August 29th.

Is the B-2 visa able to be extended?

Although Arnold is from the Netherlands, covered by the Visa Waiver Program, we want a visa that will allow him to be in the US for longer than 90 days, or is possible to file for an extension to allow him to be here as long as absolutely possible.

If Arnold came on a B-2 visa, would he be able to attend a job interview?

Our initial plan for the easiest way to get a visa was through an employment transfer. His boss at Staples Office Center in the Netherlands originally told him he would easily be able to transfer him to the Staples closest to where I live here in the US, but we've recently found out that an international transfer is not possible. However, his boss was happy to fax a letter of recommendation to the US Staples, and I personally called and spoke to that General Manager, who assured me that if the (mandatory) interview with Arnold went well, he would definitely be hired, "no question about it". However, we're talking about a job at Staples here, so with many qualified Americans already needing jobs as it is, we obviously realize that no General Manager of a Staples is going to go out of his way to make the first move of petitioning for a Dutch guy to come fill the part-time opening; rather, Arnold is going to have to make the first move.

Now, we realize that the B-2 visa is for the purpose of pleasure travel, and that he will need a special visa or authorization to actually be legally employed here in the States, so my next question is...

If Arnold came on a B-2 visa, is it possible (and how difficult would it be) to adjust the status (or switch the type of visa?) to that with which he may be legally employed in a retail job? And how long would this process take?

And I'd also like to mention here that we've considered other types of visa - specifically, the K-1 (although being a self-employed photographer, I'm certain I will fail the Affidavit of Support form, and not sure if I could find a co-sponsor), not to mention we do NOT want to WAIT 5 to 12 months for that entire process before we can begin our lives together.

We've also considered employment-based visas, especially when we were planning on the employment transfer through Staples, but Arnold doesn't have any college degrees or specialized technical skills that would put him in high demand, that an employer would petition for on his behalf. I don't mean for that to sound negative in any way, but I'm trying to be realistic - employers aren't going to jump through visa hoops when there are Americans with the same qualifications already needing the available retail jobs, right? :(

So, for the moment, we're under the impression that the B-2 visa (IF it's extendable, and IF it's possible to adjust the status and be authorized to work) would be our best plan. Truly, the bottom line is finding a way for Arnold to be able to stay here as long as possible, with the ability to be legally employed. We're prepared to do whatever it takes to be together.

I appologize for the lengthy post. Any and all advice, thoughts, and comments are appreciated - THANK YOU in advance! :)

I have also heard that the B-2 visa is hard to get.

I wish I had some better advise for you.

Good luck on whatever visa you decide on!!


Timeline

K-1 Visa

Event Date

Service Center : California Service Center

Consulate : London, United Kingdom

I-129F Sent : 04-23-2010

I-129F NOA1 : 04-27-2010

Touched 07-01-2010

Touched 07-02-2010

I-129F NOA2 : 07-02-2010

Touched : 07-6-2010

NVC Received :

NVC Left : 07-12-2010

Consulate Received : 07-14-2010

Packet 3 Received : 07-29-2010

Packet 3 Sent : 07-29-2010

Packet 4 Received : 08-20-2010

Interview Date : 09-14-2010

Interview Result : Approved!!!!!

Visa Received : 09-24-2010

US Entry : 12-30-2010

Marriage : 2-26-2011

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Using the B-2 to enter with the intention of getting married and adjusting your status to a PR is visa fraud and is illegal.

And no, he can't work on a tourist visa. That is also a violation of the visa.

Your fastest and quickest bet would be the K-1. Being apart sucks but we all deal(t) with it.

Thanks, sachinky, for your reply. :)

No, we're not intending to get married while he is on a visitor visa - we're aware that's illegal. But really, getting married isn't the point. Yes, of course we'd be happy to get married if we had to go the K-1 route, but we're really hoping there's a better (faster) alternative to be able to wake up next to each other everyday.

And he can't work on a tourist visa, I know. But can he interview for a job on a B-2? His current employer suggested he come over, interview for the job, and if he were to be considered hired, then the US employer would be able to petition, changing his visa. This could be totally wrong - I'm unsure, a bit naive, and just trying to wrap my head around things.


AOS from Marriage on B2 ~ Full & Detailed Timeline in My Profile

  • Married in Las Vegas - 5.11.11
  • Greencard received - 11.18.11
  • Removing of Conditions - package mailed 10.9.13
  • Greencard received - 1.23.14
  • Naturalization - package mailed 4.26.16
  • Oath ceremony - 3.28.17
  • Petition Alien Relative (Father Abroad) - package mailed 7.14.17
  • Check cashed - 7.21.17
  • NOA1 (I-797C receipt dated 7.18) received - 7.27.17
  • NOA2 (approval, dated 1.31) received - 2.5.18

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I have also heard that the B-2 visa is hard to get.

I wish I had some better advise for you.

Good luck on whatever visa you decide on!!

Hard to get... yikes. :(

But thanks Aly and Randy! :)


AOS from Marriage on B2 ~ Full & Detailed Timeline in My Profile

  • Married in Las Vegas - 5.11.11
  • Greencard received - 11.18.11
  • Removing of Conditions - package mailed 10.9.13
  • Greencard received - 1.23.14
  • Naturalization - package mailed 4.26.16
  • Oath ceremony - 3.28.17
  • Petition Alien Relative (Father Abroad) - package mailed 7.14.17
  • Check cashed - 7.21.17
  • NOA1 (I-797C receipt dated 7.18) received - 7.27.17
  • NOA2 (approval, dated 1.31) received - 2.5.18

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Filed: Citizen (apr) Country: Belgium
Timeline

I'm not sure it would be possible for him to have a visa by the end of August, and it is very hard to get a B-2. He will need a lot of proof that he doesn't intend to stay, that he will not try to get work, and will return home after 6 months. A friend of mine from Holland was denied a B-2 because she had no real evidence she was going to return to the Netherlands as she had no job (she lives off her art) and had a boyfriend in the states, therefore the interviewer saw it as "motivation to not return".

However a friend of mine from here in Belgium applied for the K-1 in 2008, there were no questions asked, and she got it within 6 months and is living in the states for over a year now.

I'm gonna say if you two have talked of marriage and plan it for the future, go the K-1 route. Evidence of your relationship might be a little harder to prove since you've only known each other since Feb, but it's a good route, and totally worth the wait!

I don't know if it's even an option, but the other way you could be with him faster is if you went to the Netherlands and marry there. I think you can stay as "live in girlfriend", we have that in Belgium, but they require two years of proof that you are in a strong relationship. If you are married in the Netherlands and become a resident for at least 6 months you can apply for his visa and greencard at the embassy. That usually takes 4-6 weeks to process.


belgium-flag.gift4518.gifunitedstates.gif

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Filed: Citizen (apr) Country: Ireland
Timeline

He can interview on the B2, but not work, and there are no work type visas for retail jobs. Also, as mentioned, getting a B2 in your circumstances would be difficult, as the consulate will assume immigrant intent. Of course, it isn't very expensive so worth a try I suppose.

My suggestion would be to start the K1 now, as soon as you have all the documents together. Then you visit him as planned, and he can visit you for the 90 days allowed on the VWP. It should only be a few more month after he returns to the Netherlands until he gets his K1 interview and hopefully visa, which will allow him to move to the USA and, after you marry, file for Adjustment of Status and work within 3 months or so.


Bye: Penguin

Me: Irish/ Swiss citizen, and now naturalised US citizen. Husband: USC; twin babies born Feb 08 in Ireland and a daughter in Feb 2010 in Arkansas who are all joint Irish/ USC. Did DCF (IR1) in 6 weeks via the Dublin, Ireland embassy and now living in Arkansas.

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Filed: Citizen (apr) Country: Argentina
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Thanks, sachinky, for your reply. :)

No, we're not intending to get married while he is on a visitor visa - we're aware that's illegal. But really, getting married isn't the point. Yes, of course we'd be happy to get married if we had to go the K-1 route, but we're really hoping there's a better (faster) alternative to be able to wake up next to each other everyday.

And he can't work on a tourist visa, I know. But can he interview for a job on a B-2? His current employer suggested he come over, interview for the job, and if he were to be considered hired, then the US employer would be able to petition, changing his visa. This could be totally wrong - I'm unsure, a bit naive, and just trying to wrap my head around things.

ditto to what the others have said.

unfortunatly, a labor certification, meaning petitioned by the employer takes many years, it can be more than 5 years and he would have to maintain legal status at all times. so that's not an option for you. It's not that easy, immigration process's never are. At least, the vast majority aren't.

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Thank you all very, very much for your responses! It's truly appreciated.

Mithmeoi - thank you for those examples and details. Yes, I've thought about getting married and spending an extended period of time in the Netherlands, but unfortunately I'm a bit tied down to the mortgage and house I own here in the States (can't just up and sell it, especially not in this housing market), as well as 2 dogs who would get rather expensive to board in a kennel if I were to be out of the country for more than, say, a month at a time. :(

Penguin - thanks for answering my specific questions about the B-2 and interviewing. The more we learn about the B-2 (and especially proving intent to return to the Netherlands), the less it seems to be a good option.

If all else fails, the K-1 is still considerable; however, I'm fairly certain I will not qualify as a sponsor with the Affidavit of Support, being freelance self-employed. I just don't have the personal income or financial history to back it up, and no close relatives, other than my parents perhaps, who I could consider asking to co-sponsor.

The situation seems so complicated right now, but we're holding out on "where there's a will, there's a way."


AOS from Marriage on B2 ~ Full & Detailed Timeline in My Profile

  • Married in Las Vegas - 5.11.11
  • Greencard received - 11.18.11
  • Removing of Conditions - package mailed 10.9.13
  • Greencard received - 1.23.14
  • Naturalization - package mailed 4.26.16
  • Oath ceremony - 3.28.17
  • Petition Alien Relative (Father Abroad) - package mailed 7.14.17
  • Check cashed - 7.21.17
  • NOA1 (I-797C receipt dated 7.18) received - 7.27.17
  • NOA2 (approval, dated 1.31) received - 2.5.18

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Filed: Other Timeline

It's not illegal for you to get married in the US while on vacation.

Your boyfriend would need a heck of a reason for applying for a B2; after all, a 3-month vacation is already beyond the financial means of most working folks and he can't work in the US anyway. If he brings up a relationship to a US citizen, you'll see more red flags going up then in the late Mao-Tse-Tung's China.

Yes, he can interview but hell will freeze over before he will able to get a job-based visa to the US unless he didn't tell you about his lately successful, post-Doctorate research in nuclear fusion.

Edited by Just Bob

There is no room in this country for hyphenated Americanism. When I refer to hyphenated Americans, I do not refer to naturalized Americans. Some of the very best Americans I have ever known were naturalized Americans, Americans born abroad. But a hyphenated American is not an American at all . . . . The one absolutely certain way of bringing this nation to ruin, of preventing all possibility of its continuing to be a nation at all, would be to permit it to become a tangle of squabbling nationalities, an intricate knot of German-Americans, Irish-Americans, English-Americans, French-Americans, Scandinavian-Americans or Italian-Americans, each preserving its separate nationality, each at heart feeling more sympathy with Europeans of that nationality, than with the other citizens of the American Republic . . . . There is no such thing as a hyphenated American who is a good American. The only man who is a good American is the man who is an American and nothing else.

President Teddy Roosevelt on Columbus Day 1915

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It's not illegal for you to get married in the US while on vacation.

Your boyfriend would need a heck of a reason for applying for a B2; after all, a 3-month vacation is already beyond the financial means of most working folks and he can't work in the US anyway. If he brings up a relationship to a US citizen, you'll see more red flags going up then in the late Mao-Tse-Tung's China.

Yes, he can interview but hell will freeze over before he will able to get a job-based visa to the US unless he didn't tell you about his lately successful, post-Doctorate research in nuclear fusion.

Bob - I actually LOL'd, which isn't usually easy to do when it comes to reading about this visa stuff! Thanks for that. ;)

Yeah, at this point, I think we're abandoning the B-2 idea, based on the answers to my questions... too hard, too suspicious, the employment fiasco, and just not the right fit for our situation. Thanks a lot for your reply!


AOS from Marriage on B2 ~ Full & Detailed Timeline in My Profile

  • Married in Las Vegas - 5.11.11
  • Greencard received - 11.18.11
  • Removing of Conditions - package mailed 10.9.13
  • Greencard received - 1.23.14
  • Naturalization - package mailed 4.26.16
  • Oath ceremony - 3.28.17
  • Petition Alien Relative (Father Abroad) - package mailed 7.14.17
  • Check cashed - 7.21.17
  • NOA1 (I-797C receipt dated 7.18) received - 7.27.17
  • NOA2 (approval, dated 1.31) received - 2.5.18

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Filed: Citizen (apr) Country: Ireland
Timeline

Finances are an issue for many couples. Maybe you have assets you could use (your photography business, if you have a shop, for example? Other options are taking a salaried job for a year or so (ie through the visa and AOS process), or as you say a co-sponsor. It doesn't need to be family, it can be a friend or work aquaintance- anyone as long as they are legally resident in the USA.


Bye: Penguin

Me: Irish/ Swiss citizen, and now naturalised US citizen. Husband: USC; twin babies born Feb 08 in Ireland and a daughter in Feb 2010 in Arkansas who are all joint Irish/ USC. Did DCF (IR1) in 6 weeks via the Dublin, Ireland embassy and now living in Arkansas.

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Finances are an issue for many couples. Maybe you have assets you could use (your photography business, if you have a shop, for example? Other options are taking a salaried job for a year or so (ie through the visa and AOS process), or as you say a co-sponsor. It doesn't need to be family, it can be a friend or work aquaintance- anyone as long as they are legally resident in the USA.

Thanks Penguin. :) I think co-sponsor would be my best option if we went the K-1 route. I'm only 25, so by photography business, I mean I own a camera and photo shoot equipment, and work freelance from home... not a major business or shop by any means.

My parents are probably my best option for co-sponsors, but it just seems like a bold thing to ask of them (although they've aleady met Arnold and like him a lot!).


AOS from Marriage on B2 ~ Full & Detailed Timeline in My Profile

  • Married in Las Vegas - 5.11.11
  • Greencard received - 11.18.11
  • Removing of Conditions - package mailed 10.9.13
  • Greencard received - 1.23.14
  • Naturalization - package mailed 4.26.16
  • Oath ceremony - 3.28.17
  • Petition Alien Relative (Father Abroad) - package mailed 7.14.17
  • Check cashed - 7.21.17
  • NOA1 (I-797C receipt dated 7.18) received - 7.27.17
  • NOA2 (approval, dated 1.31) received - 2.5.18

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