Many people ask us, “Can I immigrate to the U.S. for medical treatment?”
In many cases, the answer is yes. However, visiting the U.S. for medical treatment requires a B-2 tourist visa. If you want to come to the U.S. for healthcare, you’ll have to show that the treatment you will receive is medically necessary and that it’s inaccessible or unavailable in your home country.
As a B-2 tourist visa applicant, you’ll also have to prove your ability to pay for the medical treatment you need.
Because the process can be complicated, many people choose to work with a Milwaukee immigration lawyer who understands the “red tape” associated with immigration and medically necessary treatment.
What Your Immigration Lawyer will Ask You to Do
Before your immigration attorney can help you begin the process, he or she will ask you to provide:
- A medical diagnosis from your healthcare professional that explains the nature of your problem and the reason treatment is necessary
- A letter from a U.S. medical facility or physician stating that you want your ailment treated in the U.S. (The letter should also specify the estimated cost and length of the treatment, including hospital and doctor fees as well as all other related expenses)
- Verifiable proof that you are able to pay for your medical expenses, transportation expenses and living expenses while you’re in the U.S.
According to the State Department, you may qualify for a B-2 visa if you are coming to the U.S. for “any legitimate activities of a recreational character, including tourism, amusement, visits with friends or relatives, rest, medical treatment and activities of a fraternal, social or service nature.”
Other Options for Immigrating to the U.S. for Healthcare
If you cannot afford to pay for your medical treatment, you can have a U.S. friend or relative agree to sponsor you. Your sponsor will have to provide information about their income, bank accounts, employment status and resources contributing to their finances. Your immigration lawyer will be able to assist you with the appropriate paperwork if this route is more appropriate for your needs.
Ineligibility Rules for a B-2 Tourist Visa
Not everyone who appears to qualify for a B-2 visa can actually apply. People with certain contagious or infectious diseases may not be eligible, including people suffering from:
- Sexually transmitted infections
- Yellow fever (malaria)
Working with a lawyer may help expedite the process. Your immigration lawyer can ensure that you have all the necessary verifications and that your paperwork is complete before sending in your applications. In fact, many delays in immigration paperwork are due to errors in filling out the forms. One mistake could cost you valuable time – time that you could be using to get the medical treatment you need.