US Visa for Couples Outside Marriage
Under the US Immigration Law, there are restrictions for common-law couples. However, in 2011, the US government has amended the Visa Instruction Manual for household members of non-immigrant aliens who may not be qualified of obtaining such visa. With the amended Instruction Manual, they have the opportunity to travel together through the “B2” tourist visa.
Examples of these are the following:
- Same sex cohabiting partners
- Exchange of students, visitors
- Government officials
- And temporary workers in US
The above mentioned may be qualified or eligible for a tourist visa as specified by the law and in accordance to their related status. This type of visa may also extend to parents who usually live with a non-immigrant visa holder, such as the parents of a minor or elderly parent. This type of visa is also applicable to family members whose status best corresponds to obtaining or applying tourist visa.
As policy of the US Immigration, if one is qualified under the amended instruction manual, the subject must comply with the process provided by the law in applying tourist visa. He or she has to procure or secure the documents needed such as proof of long term relationship and had lived with the principal non-immigrant or US citizen for a considerable period of time. This may include a marriage certificate or domestic partnership agreement, and a statement from the principal non-immigrant or US citizen confirming the relationship. In the case of a household member of another non-immigrant, he or she must bring the non-immigrant’s immigration documents on the visa interview.
In addition to these, eligibility for the B2 tourist visa must be supported by proving that the subject has no intention of staying permanently in the US and that he or she will return to his residence of origin. Obviously, this is easy to notice if the subject is a member of a household of another non-immigrant who had already proved that he or she intends not to stay permanently in the US but to leave before or on the given period of time. Embassies and Consulates have been instructed not to focus absolutely on the length of stay for B2 tourist visa holders since this type of visa has a definite limit and would terminate automatically to the two  year work assignment of the principal non-immigrant or US citizen.
Like all tourist visas, members of the household of a US citizen are not allowed to work in the US although the length of the initial tourist visa is one  year. It can even be extended for an additional of six  months as the visa holders apply for the extension of B2 tourist visa which will depend to the plans of the household of the US citizen. Be sure that your relationship as members of the household and the US citizen has been noted by the tourist visa officer in your case file.
If the status of the couples are cohabiting partners and intend to make a visit to the US, Siam Legal International can help them with their application. Please, contact Siam Legal and discuss all the possibilities of using the appropriate visa for your present status and have a convenient travel to the USA.
Category: US Tourist Visa
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Siam Legal is a full service law firm but it has an extensive range of immigration, corporate, and real estate experience accessible to clients both domestically and internationally. It has offices strategically located throughout the major cities in Thailand including Chiang Mai, Pattaya, Hua Hin, Samui and Phuket along with international representative offices in Australia, London and Las Vegas.