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What do you need to work in the United States?

If you want to work in the United States, it's important that you do so legally and with the proper documentation. Not doing so violates the law and can end up resulting in deportation.

To work within the United States, you need to have a work permit, employment-related visa or a Permanent Resident Card. Each of the above may be obtained by those with different circumstances. For instance, someone with a work permit may not be a permanent resident, and a permanent resident may not have an employment-related visa for a particular employer.

If you would like to enter the United States to work temporarily, you may be a nonimmigrant worker, student or exchange visitor with a work permit or a temporary visitor for business. If you are a nonimmigrant workers, you may receive a work permit for a specific task for a limited amount of time. As a student or exchange worker, you may have the right to work if you are authorized to do so by a school official.

Temporary business visitors need a B-1 visa unless they have the right to admission without a visa thanks to the Visa Waiver Program. If you can enter under the Visa Waiver Program, you can do so temporarily and conduct business during the limited time frame. If not, it's vital to seek the B-1 visa before entering the United States, since you will not be allowed to conduct business otherwise.

If you need a visa or permit, your attorney can help. With the right documents, you can legally work and enjoy life in the United States.

Source: U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, "Working in the US," accessed June 16, 2017

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