United States: Foreign Nationals Face Continued High Levels of Scrutiny
Foreign nationals should continue to be prepared for high levels of scrutiny at U.S. ports of entry, particularly if they will engage in B-1 business visits or H-1B or L-1 employment at the location of a client, rather than of their employer.
In recent weeks, there have been more frequent reports that U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officials have refused admission to some B-1 foreign nationals because of questions concerning the nature of their visits to locations other than their employers’ offices. The reported incidents took place at airports in numerous locations around the United States.
Although the recent occurrences pertained to individuals seeking entry as B-1 business visitors, all foreign nationals who will work or conduct business at client sites, regardless of their nonimmigrant classification, should be prepared for stringent inspections at any entry point to the United States. To minimize entry problems, B-1 business visitors must be able to respond to questions about the nature of their business visits to the United States, and should carry detailed and clear documentation of the purpose of their visits. H-1B and L-1 workers should be ready to answer inspectors’ questions about the nature of their employment, their job duties and location and their salary. H-1B employees should also be able to show a labor condition application (LCA) that covers their work locations, including client sites.