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If you are wondering: How long can we stay in USA with tourist visa? You should know that overstaying your allowed time could bring you serious immigration consequences.

This is because the B-2 tourist visa is a temporary visa. Therefore, you will be able to stay in the country for a few months. However, staying to live with this visa carries the risk of being deported and facing other possible penalties. 

If you want to evaluate your chances of living in the U. S, don’t risk staying illegally. Call us, at Curbelo Law you will find the legal advice you need. 

So, How Long Can We Really Stay In The USA With A Tourist Visa In 2024?

If you decide to stay in the United States on a tourist visa, you could face serious consequences. Authorities could deport you and even bar you from returning for several years. 

All of this is because the B-2 visa does not allow lawful permanent residence or working in the United States.

As if that were not enough, you could be detained until your trial in Immigration Court or until the day of your deportation. This applies to both those with a B-2 visa and those who entered with ESTA permission and exceeded the 90-day period.

staying with a tourist visa in the united states

How Can I Stay Legally In The USA If I Entered With A Tourist Visa?

As we mentioned, the tourist visa is temporary, so you will not be able to stay in the country. However, let’s say you entered with the intention of visiting the country, but during your stay, you fell in love or a job caught your eye.

If so, the first thing you will need to do is verify your Green Card eligibility through adjustment of status. To do this, you will have to qualify for one of the following categories:

In general, if you fit into any of these classifications, you may be able to apply for lawful permanent residence.

What Is The Process To Obtain Residency If I Stayed On A Tourist Visa In The USA?

If you comply with the above, USCIS will be responsible for processing requests to change status from nonimmigrant to immigrant.

Therefore, to start your residency application, you must present the following documents:

  • Form I-485.
  • Form I-130 or I-140, depending on whether it is a family or employment petition.
  • Application I-730, if you will apply for refuge or asylum. 

The requirements to obtain the Green Card vary depending on the reason for the application. On the other hand, those who enter the U. S. through the visa waiver program generally cannot adjust their status. 

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Seek advice from our New Jersey immigration law firm to ensure you submit all required documents and meet the deadlines set by immigration law.

How Long Does It Take To Adjust Status If I Stayed On A Tourist Visa In The United States?

If you changed your tourist status to another valid immigration status to apply for lawful permanent residence, the time to complete the adjustment of status will vary. 

It usually takes at least a year from the time the application is submitted. However, the length of the process depends on several factors, such as whether you have accumulated an unlawful presence in the country. 

Additionally, applications filed by American citizens are typically processed faster than those filed by lawful permanent residents.

It is essential to submit the application within the period of authorized stay in the country. Likewise, while you wait for the resolution, you will not be allowed to work. In some cases, it may be wise to return to your home country and apply for consular processing.

Can I Really Change My Tourist Status In The United States?

It is possible to adjust your status from a B-1 or B-2 visa to another type of visa while you are in the U. S. However, you must meet certain requirements. 

This process involves submitting a change of status request to USCIS. That being said, here are some key points to consider:

  • Purpose of stay: You must demonstrate that your reason for staying in the United States matches the new type of visa you are applying for. For example, if you want to study, you can request a change to a student visa (F-1).
  • Timing: You must apply before your current status expires, usually indicated on the I-94 arrival/departure record. USCIS recommends applying at least 45 days before your current status expires.
  • Eligibility: Not everyone can change their status. For example, you typically cannot change your status if you entered the United States under ESTA.
  • Violation of status: If you have violated the terms of your current status, such as working without authorization, you will not be able to change your status.
  • Approval: Even if you meet all the conditions and apply, the final decision is up to USCIS.

What If I Married An American?

If you have recently married a U. S. citizen or lawful permanent resident, you may be able to apply for a Green Card by marriage. 

This allows you to remain in the United States and live with your spouse. It should be noted that you must first complete marriage-based Green Card interview questions.

For more information on the subject, consult with our lawyers. They will explain everything you need to know about the K-1 fiancé(e) visa.

Reasons To Use The Tourist Visa In The USA

Some applications for the B-2 tourist visa in the USA include:

  • Tourism.
  • Vacation.
  • Visit with friends or family.
  • Medical treatment.
  • Participation in social events organized by fraternal, social or service organizations.
  • Participation in musical, sporting or other similar events or contests, without financial compensation.
  • Enrollment in short recreational courses of study, not intended to obtain credit toward an academic degree. For example, cooking classes during the holidays.

What Not To Do With The Tourist Visa In The USA

You cannot do the following with a tourist visa in the United States:

  • Study.
  • Secure long-term employment with an American company.
  • Perform paid performances or any professional activity before a paying audience.
  • Arriving as a crew member of a ship or plane
  • Work as a foreign press, in radio, cinema, print journalism or other media.
  • Obtain lawful permanent residence.
  • Traveling for the purpose of giving birth in the United States in order to obtain U. S. citizenship for the child.

Canadian citizens generally do not require a visa to enter the United States for tourism purposes. However, they will need a suitable visa if they have specific plans, such as studying, working or moving to this country. Contact our TN visa lawyer for further information.


It is possible that aliens may be detained by immigration, especially if they commit an act that involves crimmigration. Paying an immigration bond could grant the offender freedom to later face removal proceedings from the country.

Why Can’t I Work With A Tourist Visa?

The tourist visa is intended for tourism purposes only, so you cannot work or be employed by a U. S. employer. 

Therefore, if you are interested in working in the U. S, you should explore other categories of American visas. For example, the H-1B visa.

How Can I Find Out The Application Status Of My Tourist Visa?

Once your visa application is in process, you can check the status of the process online or by phone. To do this, you must use the application receipt number. 

To reschedule your interview appointment, we recommend that you review how to do so on the portal of the embassy or consulate where the appointment is scheduled. 

There, select the corresponding embassy or consulate from the list provided by the Department of State and follow the detailed instructions.

Steps To Know The Status Of A Tourist Visa

Tourist visa applications are handled by the United States Department of State. 

Therefore, if you have applied for a B-1 or B-2 visa, we recommend using the online visa status checker by following these steps:

  1. Select the “NON IMMIGRANT VISA (NIV)” option.
  2. Select your location.
  3. Enter your case number or ID.
  4. Enter your passport number.
  5. Write the first 5 letters of your last name.
  6. Fill in the characters that appear in the image.
  7. Click the “Submit” button.

The Department of State does not guarantee the processing time of this application. Therefore, we advise you to be patient.

So, for how Long Can I Stay In The United States With A Tourist Visa?

staying illegaly on a tourist b-2 visa

Foreigners with a tourist visa in the United States have a maximum stay of 180 days or 6 months. Of course, immigration can establish a shorter time. 

If 6 months are granted, the stay can be enjoyed even if the consular interview indicates less time. It is important to respect the date indicated on the passport stamp and obtain Form I-94 for extended stays or land travel.

Can I Stay More Than 6 Months In The USA With A Visitor Visa?

A tourist can stay in the United States for more than 6 months with a B-2 visa, but it is necessary to complete a form to request an extension of stay.

What Happens If I Stay In The USA For 5 Months?

If you overstay your visa in the United States, you could face severe consequences, including deportation and a bar on re-entry. The most advisable thing is to comply with the time allowed.

What To Do If I Have Already Exceeded The Length Of Stay?

If you have already exceeded your stay time, we recommend you follow the following steps:

  1. Contact our immigration attorneys immediately.
  2. Keep calm.
  3. Determine eligibility for an extension period on your visa.
  4. Comply with all immigration laws.
  5. Be patient.

How Can I Request An Extension Of Stay Of My Tourist Visa In The United States?

You can request an extension of your stay while you are in the U. S. However, it must be before your authorized stay on your I-94 permit expires. 

It should be noted that not all individuals with a tourist visa qualify to apply for an extension of stay. Either way, you can check with USCIS or our attorneys to find out whether or not you can extend it. 

If you qualify for the extension, you can request it online or by mail using Form I-539, as long as you pay your fee.

Who Qualifies For An Extension Of Stay With A Tourist Visa?

National foreigners can request an extension of their stay in the United States if:

  • They were legally admitted to the U. S. on a nonimmigrant visa.
  • Your visa is currently valid.
  • They are still eligible for their visa category.
  • They have not committed any crime.
  • They have not violated the conditions of their admission.
  • Their passport is valid and will remain valid during your extended stay.
  • They have a valid and legitimate reason to extend their stay.
  • They have definite plans to leave at the end of the proposed visa extension period.
  • They have provided valid evidence of financial support.

Considerations On The Use Of The Tourist Visa In The United States

If you decide to visit the United States with a tourist visa, you must comply with certain obligations. For example, having this permit does not exempt you from a limit on your stay in the country.

extend stay with tourist visa

The length of your stay is determined by a Customs and Border Protection (CBP) immigration agent or inspector, regardless of the validity of your visa. 

Additionally, although you can obtain a tourist visa for up to 10 years to visit the U. S, the maximum stay allowed is 180 days or 6 months.

What Are The Consequences Of Exceeding The Time Limit Allowed In The United States?

If for any reason you remain in the country beyond the stipulated date, you could face serious consequences. These range from deportation to the definitive cancellation of your visa. Some of the sanctions include:

  • If you exceed one day or more, you could be considered under “unlawful presence,” which could limit your future procedures in the United States.
  • If it exceeds 180 days, you may be bared from entering the country for 3 years.
  • If it exceeds one year, the entry bar is extended to 10 years.

Additionally, your visa will be revoked, which will have a significant impact on any future applications to obtain it again.

In these cases, requesting a waiver of inadmissibility could allow you to re-enter the country without having to wait years to do so.

How Many Times Can I Visit The United States In The Same Year?

There is no set rule that specifies the period of time one must remain outside the United States. 

Since each individual faces unique circumstances, there is no exact answer. However, certain aspects can help avoid inconveniences, these are:

  • Respect the purpose of the tourist visa, as it is for vacation purposes.
  • Maintain ties with your country of origin. For example, economic, work, family and so on.

Additionally, the decision whether or not to allow you to enter the country falls at the discretion of the immigration officer. If it is determined that you are inadmissible to enter the United States, you will be returned to your home country.

What Could Be The Consequences If The Officer Suspects That you Will Stay On The Tourist Visa In The United States?

The immigration officers have the power to decide whether to allow entry into the country. Furthermore, they could opt for immediate expulsion or voluntary departure.

In some scenarios, a second inspection may be required. Additionally, when applying to renew a tourist visa, the consulate or embassy may deny your application.

What Can Our Immigration Lawyers Do For You?

This blog seeks to be informative and useful regarding the query: “How long can we stay in USA with tourist visa.” Now, to give you accurate answers it is important to know your case in detail. 

All legal matters can be stressful, complicated and difficult, especially if you want to do it on your own. At the law firm of Curbelo Law, attorneys Carolina T. Curbelo and Sharon Lieberman can help you address your legal needs.

Call us today, send us an E-mail and schedule an appointment with the office in Ridgewood, New Jersey.