L-1 Visa | Multinational Corporation Employee | L-1A and L-1B Visas
The L-1 visa is a work visa that allows foreign nationals to come to the United States to work for a company related to their foreign company. This visa category is reserved for executives, managers, and employees with “specialized knowledge.” If you are planning on applying for an L-1 visa, there are some essential things you need to know. In this article, we will cover everything from the requirements for the visa to the application process. Keep reading to learn more about the L-1 visa and how you can apply for one.
There are companies that sponsor L-1 visas. Companies with more than one location in the United States and in other countries can sponsor non-U.S. citizens to move to the U.S. This is possible using L-1 visas. The person must have worked for the company in another country for at least one continuous year.
What is L-1 Visa?
An L-1 visa is a non-immigrant visa that allows a foreign national to enter the United States to work in a managerial or executive capacity or with specialized knowledge for a U.S. company affiliated with the foreign national’s home country.
The non-immigrant visa category includes three subcategories:
❖ L-1A visas are for managers and executives;
❖ L-1B visas are for employees with “specialized knowledge”; and
❖ L-2 visas are for spouses and unmarried children of L-1 visa holders.
What are the L-1 time limits
There are limits to how long a person can live and work in the U.S. on an L-1 visa. The limits depend on the type of job:
Managers and executives can apply to have an L-1A visa for up to seven years.
Workers who have special knowledge of things like the company’s products, systems, research, operations, management, or procedures can apply to have an L-1B visa for up to five years. The company has to prove that this information isn’t available already in the U.S.
Rules for new companies
There are special rules for companies that are new:
An L-1 non-immigrant visa is approved for one year instead of seven or five years.
After the first year, a three-year visa may be approved if the company can show it was successful. The USCIS will use the number of jobs added and financial statements of the company to decide if the company was successful.
Blanket L-1 Visa Option
Larger companies that want to sponsor more than one worker can use the Blanket L-1 visa option. This allows the company to list more than one employee on the application.
If the Blanket L-1 is approved, there is more flexibility in the future to bring workers to the U.S. We can help you decide if your company meets the requirements for the Blanket L-1 option.
What are the L-1 Non-Immigrant Visa Requirements?
Assuming you are referring to the visa requirements for intra-company transfers, the following are required:
❖ The applicant must have been employed with the overseas company for at least one year within the three years preceding the application.
❖ The applicant must transfer to a U.S. company affiliated with the overseas company. The affiliation can be through common ownership or control.
❖ The applicant must be coming to the U.S. to work in a managerial or executive capacity. Or must be as a worker with “specialized knowledge.”
As for documentation, the following will be required:
❖ The U.S. company filed a petition on behalf of the applicant.
❖ Evidence of overseas employment, such as pay stubs or performance reviews.
❖ Evidence of the relationship between the U.S. and overseas companies, such as shareholdings or articles of incorporation.
If you want to transfer within your company from another country to the United States, you will need to apply for an L-1 visa. This type of visa allows foreign workers who have been employed with a parent, branch, affiliate, or subsidiary of their U.S. employer in another country for at least one continuous year within the past three years to live and work in America for up to seven years.
To qualify for the L-1 visa, specific requirements must be met by both you and your employer. That includes but is not limited to those listed above.
What are the Benefits of an L-1 Visa?
There are many benefits to having an L-1 non-immigrant visa. Perhaps the most obvious benefit is that it allows the holder to live and work in the United States for a specific period. The visa also allows holders to bring their immediate family members to the United States.
Additionally, the L-1 visa gives family members access to benefits such as education and work, to which they would not otherwise have access. Finally, having an L-1 visa can be seen as a stepping stone to obtaining more permanent status in the United States, such as a green card or citizenship.
There are many benefits to the L-1 visa program, but companies should be cautious when filing the visa petitions themselves. The application process can be complex, and there are various pitfalls that companies must avoid.
Speak to a U.S. immigration lawyer today; You cannot tolerate delays and errors.
If you require L-1 visas for employees as soon as possible, call us if you want to avoid making mistakes that will slow down the procedure.