Research faculty at Augusta University are often involved in numerous collaborations with colleagues at other institutions, both in the United States and abroad.

These joint projects often require face-to-face meetings to further research projects, review results, provide short-term training or present findings on relevant topics. For international colleagues, such short-term stays are often best managed by something other than the typical nonimmigrant status processed by the International and Postdoctoral Services Office (IPSO). Most meetings of this sort can be accommodated quickly and economically through the issuance of a B-1 visitor visa at their local U.S. embassy or consulate. This visa is designed specifically for such short-term visits to the United States by professionals. Armed with a letter of invitation from a sponsoring faculty member, foreign researchers can apply for a B-1 visa and arrange their visit in short order.

What is a B-1 Visitor Visa?

The B-1 Visitor Visa is used for temporary business-related travel to the United States to consult with business associates, attend a scientific, educational, professional or business conference, settle an estate, or negotiate a contract.  For more information on the B-1 Visitor Visa, please refer to U.S. Department of State Guidance on Business Visitor Visas and BUSINESS VISA LISTINGS. 


The B-1 Visitor Invitation Process

Step 1:

Departments should begin by submitting an Immigration Consultation Request Form (ICRF) to determine if the visitor should be in B-1 status. Be sure to fill out the form completely and include a copy of the invitee's CV. Please wait for a response from IPSO before proceeding. If the ICRF response recommends B-1 status, the department may proceed with the steps below.

Step 2:

Please review U.S. Department of State Guidance on Business Visitor Visas and BUSINESS VISA LISTINGS to be clear on the limitations of the B-1 visa.  Then, complete the Augusta University B-1 Visitor Invitation. This should be done three months prior to the proposed start date of activity. Forward the invitation letter to the B-1 visitor for review and signature.

Step 3:

Contact your HR Business Partner to complete all necessary processes regarding the background check, ethics policy, confidentiality statement, sexual-harassment policy, and information systems security and computer usage policy for your B-1 visitor. The department manager should confirm these have been completed prior to the visitor commencing any activities at AU.

Step 4:

The visitor can use the signed invitation letter to apply for a B-1 visa at the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate.


Payment Restrictions for B-1 Visitors

For information about payment restrictions for B-1 visitors, please see our webpage on honorarium payments to foreign nationals.  


Arrival at Augusta University

Upon arrival at Augusta University, the B-1 Visitor is required to check in with the sponsoring faculty and department administrator to review their rights and responsibilities as listed in the invitation letter. The department administrator will make a copy of the visitor’s B-1 visa for the visitor file.


B-1 Visitors on the AU Campus

All Augusta University B-1 visitors are restricted to the activities as listed on the invitation letter. These activities are only authorized for the times as listed on the letter. B-1 visitors must carry the invitation letter on them at all times and present it to any Augusta University Public Safety Officer who requests identifying documents for the visitor. B-1 visitors must be escorted at all times while on the Augusta University campuses. 


Termination of B-1 Visitor Activities on Campus

Sponsoring department administrators are required to notify of the departure of B-1 visitors, whether at the end of the program or prior to the departure date listed on the invitation letter.


Limitations to the B-1 Program

The B-1 program is meant for short-term visits for collaboration, presentations, and training.  It should not be used for other purposes or as a means to enter the U.S. for employment. Candidates for employment currently in B-1 status will be required to leave the country and re-enter in an immigration status appropriate for employment. Additionally, B-1 programs should be one-time visits and are not eligible for extension.


B-1 Observerships

For information on B-1 Observerships, please consult contact Mary Tipton

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