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Florida is a favored destination for tourists and immigrants alike. As of 2014, approximately 4 million immigrants were living in the Sunshine State. Florida is fourth on the list of the top five states with the largest immigrant populations. If you are an immigrant and want to work in Florida or make it your home, you have to go through the immigration process.
Foreign nationals can travel to Florida or another after they obtain a visa or other authorization. The vast majority of immigrants enter with a visa. There are dozens of visas available to immigrants who want to enter the U.S. temporarily or permanently. For a full list of visas visit the State Department website: https://travel.state.gov/content/visas/en/general/all-visa-categories.html.
Following are the three most common visa categories:
All visas issued for travel to Florida and the rest of the U.S., fall under one of two categories except for the H-1B visa.
Nonimmigrant visas- In 2015, the State Department issued over 10 million non-immigrant visas. These visas are also known as temporary visas because they are granted to immigrants for work or travel for a limited time. Recipients of nonimmigrant visas cannot apply for a green card or citizenship unless they get an adjustment of status.
Immigrant visas- These visas are reserved for immigrants who intend on immigrating to the U.S. permanently. The State Department issued 531,463 immigrant visas in 2015. Immigrant visas are issued for employment, family sponsorship or sponsorship of a fiancé(e) or spouse.
The H-1B visa is considered a dual-intent visa because recipients can apply for a green card or citizenship if an employer sponsors them.
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