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B visas for Cohabitating Partners and Other Household Members

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) recently changed the eligibility requirements for the B-2 visa to include “household members” of nonimmigrant visa holders. This change was made in order to accommodate circumstances where the elderly parents, cohabitating partners and other household members of a nonimmigrant visa holder may not qualify for derivative status. For example, only the spouse and children of a nonimmigrant visa holder can qualify for dependent visa status. Derivative status is usually obtained by family of H1B, TN, F1, and J1 visa holders. Until now, derivative visas left out elderly parents under the care of the nonimmigrant, cohabitating partners, or other household members of the nonimmigrant outside of a marital or parent child relationship.

Recent changes now define a “household member” of a principle nonimmigrant as someone who regularly lives at the same place as the nonimmigrant visa holder and with whom the nonimmigrant visa holder has the same type of relationship and care as would be expected between immediate family members. These changes to the B-2 visa open the doors to many that have previously not qualified for nonimmigrant visas. Under this change qualified household members are able to receive B-2 visa status for as long as the primary nonimmigrant visa holder maintains their visa status. If you or a loved one fall are not qualified as an immediate family member but do qualify as a “household” member, you may be able to take advantage of this change. Contact us today to see how we can help you.

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