Immigrant Intent and B Visas

Are you considering applying for a B-2 visitor visa? It is important to be careful with your application. Not only should you take care to complete your application accurately and fully, but it is also a good idea to be mindful of some of the pitfalls that many applicants fall into. Did you know, for instance, that one of the most common reasons for B-2 visa applications to be denied is that an applicant failed to provide enough evidence to combat a presumption of immigrant intent? In this article, we will talk more about what “immigrant intent” means and how to address it in a B-2 visa application.

Immigrant Intent and B Visas

The Immigration and Nationality Act (INA), Section 214(b), requires an applicant for a visitor visa to provide sufficient evidence to overcome the presumption of immigrant intent. You see, applicants for nonimmigrant, or temporary, visas are presumed to have an intent to remain permanently in the U.S. This intent is referred to as “immigrant intent.” In order to be granted a nonimmigrant visitor visa such as a B-2 visa, the applicant must be prepared to sufficiently rebut this presumption and demonstrate to the consular officer that he or she intends to leave the U.S. by the date of the visa’s expiration.

The burden of rebutting the presumption of immigrant intent falls to the B-2 visa applicant. Being able to supply enough evidence to overcome this burden will significantly increase the applicant’s chances of having the B-2 visa application approved. Unfortunately, many B-2 visa applicants operate under the misconception that showing stronger ties to the U.S. will improve chances for visa approval when, in fact, the opposite is true. An applicant showing strong ties to the U.S. is only likely to strengthen the presumption of immigrant intent as opposed to rebutting the presumption.

The greater the ties to the U.S., the stronger the presumption becomes. An applicant will often try to show strong ties to the U.S. by providing information regarding family members in the country, property holdings here, and employment opportunities available to the visa applicant. This type of information, however, may provide the consular officer with a basis to deny the B-2 application.

Applicants will often make the mistake of not only emphasizing strong ties to the U.S. in their applications but will also show a lack of ties abroad. It is difficult, however, for an applicant to be approved for a B-2 visa without being able to show strong ties, whether these ties by familial, financial, or otherwise. For an applicant to have the best chance of approval, a B-2 visa applicant must be prepared to present evidence of ties abroad, such as:

  • Stable employment
  • Property ownership
  • Family ties
  • Prepaid school tuition
  • Round trip travel tickets
  • Ties to social/religious organizations

Furthermore, evidence of a temporary stay in the U.S. can also be helpful. Along with a round trip ticket, an application can benefit from proof of hotel reservations as well as an itinerary of planned activities for the U.S. visit.

Immigration Law Attorneys

If you have any questions about how these immigration and nationality laws in the United States may impact you or your family or want to access additional information about the United States or Canadian immigration and nationality laws, please feel free to get in touch with the immigration and nationality lawyers at the Nachman Phulwani Zimovcak (NPZ) Law Group. You can send us an email at, or you can call us at 201-670-0006 extension 104. In addition, we invite you to find more information on our website at