Can a B-1 visa holder travel to the United States after receiving I-526 approval but before obtaining a green card?

With an approved I-526 petition but no green card, it is likely the B-1 visa holder will be denied entry to the United States. Because the B-1 visa does not hold dual intent, the EB-5 investor runs the risk of misrepresenting their intent on the visitor visa since the approved I-526 petition shows a clear intention to apply for permanent residency. It is more prudent for an EB-5 investor with a B-1 visa to refrain from traveling to the U.S. and simply undergo consular processing in their home country.

If the B-1 visa holder finds it absolutely necessary to travel to the United States for business purposes before acquiring a green card, entry admittance is possible but they will likely need to provide documentation that affirms the urgent nature of their visit, as well as a clear indication of intent to return, such as an itinerary that includes a return date to their home country. An EB-5 investor who intends to do this should note that the B-1 visa allows for a maximum stay of up to one year. After the expiration of their B-1 visa, the EB-5 investor should return to their home country to avoid accruing unlawful presence. Any B-1 visa holder with an approved I-526 petition who wishes to travel to the United States before acquiring a green card is best advised consulting the local U.S. embassy or consulate office in their home country.

B-1 Visa

According to the website of United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), the B-1 visa is a visitor visa for foreign nationals seeking to enter the United States to participate in “business activities of a commercial or professional nature.”

As a visa without dual intent, any prospective applicant of the B-1 visa must prove that they intend on staying for a specific limited period of time, that the nature of their trip is for legitimate business purposes, and that they have adequate funds to cover the expenses of their trips. The applicant must also prove they are admissible to the United States and that they have significant ties to their home country, such as a home residence they have no intention of abandoning.