People tend to think of immigration law as pertaining only to individuals who come to the U.S. to live permanently and seek citizenship. However, there are a variety of reasons to hire immigration attorneys, including investing, work, study, and travel. You may be surprised to learn just how many ways a lawyer can assist you.


Coming to the United States as part of a job is one of the trickier things to do within the system. Your immigration lawyer will have to submit paperwork attesting to the fact that the work you do is valuable and can't be done by anyone already in the U.S. Some work visas also come with strict rules, such as the L1-A visa that calls for a person to leave the U.S. for a full year before they can reapply once their time in America is up.


Coming to the U.S. for school is one of the more common reasons for folks to talk with immigration lawyers. You must provide proof of acceptance to an accredited institution of higher learning in the U.S. Even after you've been approved, you may be asked to provide evidence of your continued good standing, such as documentation that you have not been placed on academic probation.


The United States offers visas to encourage people to actively invest in the country. A person must be able to demonstrate that they have at $1 million in capital immediately available without the need to borrow or raise funds, and they must show a business plan that involves hiring at least 10 employees. The government also offers an alternative program for folks who have at least $500,000 to invest in regions that are rural or that have high unemployment rates. You should make sure your immigration law attorney is able to deal with the complexities of business plans. Asking if they have experience with these kinds of cases is a good way to do this. 


While there are a number of countries that have visa-free travel arrangements with the U.S., restrictions do apply. Furthermore, almost anyone who intends to travel to the U.S. for more than 90 days will need to obtain a visa. There are also strict limitations on individuals from countries that have a recent history of civil strife and terrorism. It's wise to get your travel visa arrangements sorted out at least 6 months prior to any trip you're planning.