Key factors in determining the appropriate visa classification for the international visitor includes the nature of a visitor’s activities (research, observation, seminar or meeting participation, etc.), the visitor’s professional profile, the source of funding (foreign government, US government, grants, other), the types of reimbursements or payments to be made to the visitor and the proposed length of stay. Having the appropriate visa and a record of this on file in International Programs is important for both the visitor and the US Forest Service. Even minor and inadvertent violations of Immigration, Labor and US Forest Service regulations can have serious and irreversible consequences.
After reviewing the information provided on Who Can Participate page about J-1 Exchange Visitor Categories and B-1 visas, please contact the International Visitor Program Coordinator for advice on the appropriate visa classification for your specific program. Hosting units and prospective visitors should clearly understand the distinctions between the J-1 and B-1 visas and the limitations for each visa category before issuing invitations, preparing documents or applying for visas. Also, should international visitors who have already entered the United States wish to participate in activities sponsored by the US Forest Service, it is extremely important to contact the International Visitor Program Coordinator to discuss the visitor’s current immigration status prior to their participation.
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