L-1 Temporary Employment Visa

An L-1 “Intracompany Transferee” Visa grants non-immigrant status for executives, managers, or specialized employees, who currently work abroad for a company with legal status in the U.S., and are seeking to transfer to the U.S. office. Companies may want to transfer employees between international and U.S. branches, and parent, affiliate, and subsidiary companies, in order to ensure cohesive and aligned objectives and processes between all branches. On an L-1 Visa, you may only transfer within the company, not to a different company.

Types of L-1 Visas

  1. L-1A Status, which is available to employees performing managerial or executive tasks in the U.S..
  2. L-1B Status, which is available to employees performing tasks related to specialized knowledge.

To apply for the L-1 Visa, you’ll need to provide evidence of qualifying employment abroad in an executive, managerial, or specialized knowledge position, as well as a qualifying corporate relationship between the foreign branch or company and the U.S. counterpart.

You’ll also need a job description of both your intended U.S. assignment and your current foreign position and information about both branches or companies.

Why an L-1 Visa Lawyer

  • Preparation and submission of an extensive application packet, including forms, testimony letters, evaluations, company information, and more depending on the Applicant’s qualifications.
  • Detailed attorney cover letter outlining the legal requirements, the Applicant’s Background, and how the applicant meets all the requirements using their qualifications.
  • Strategic advice from beginning to end on how to meet the requirements and attorney provides assistance and oversees every single piece of evidence.

Requirements for L-1 Visa Application

To apply for the L-1 Visa, you’ll need to provide evidence of qualifying employment abroad in an executive, managerial, or specialized knowledge position, as well as a qualifying corporate relationship between the foreign branch or company and the U.S. counterpart.

You’ll also need a job description of both your intended U.S. assignment and your current foreign position and information about both branches or companies.

Benefits of L-1 Visa

  • Can work for the U.S. branch of your company, and you can extend your stay;
  • Can also get visas for dependents (spouse and children under 21);
  • It is a dual intent visa so you can apply for permanent residency;
  • Allows a foreign company to establish a branch in the U.S.; and
  • There are no annual limits to the visa and no set wage requirements.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

The employee must be employed in an executive, managerial, or specialized knowledge capacity, and must have been employed full-time by the foreign company/branch for a minimum of 1 continuous year prior to applying for L-1 status.

Someone in a managerial position manages an essential function within the organization (a department, subdivision, etc.) and has the authority to hire, fire, and/or recommend employees.

Someone in an executive position directs the management of the organization or a major component, establishes goals and policies, and receives only general supervision or direction from higher level executives, board of directors, or stockholders.

Someone employed in a specialized knowledge position must have distinct, noteworthy, and uncommon knowledge of the company product, or an advanced level of knowledge of the processes and procedures of the company.

The foreign and U.S. company must have a relationship that falls within the below categories:

Parent and subsidiary.
One of the entities owns more than half of the other entity.

Parent and branch.

  • A division of the same organization housed in a different physical location.
  • The branch office or operating division must not be a separate business entity.

Two subsidiaries, both of which are owned and controlled by the same parent or individual.
Contractual relationships, such as licensing and franchising, is generally NOT sufficient to qualify as a corporate relationship.

Employees with L-1 status may extend L-2 nonimmigrant status to their spouses and children under the age of 21. Family members can go through the visa application process at their local consulate or they can apply for L-2 status once already in the U.S..

Spouses can apply for work authorization once they receive L-2 status.

The L-1A can be granted for an initial stay of up to 3 years, with the possibility for two extensions of 2 years each for a total of 7 years.

The L-1B can be granted for an initial stay of up to 3 years, with the possibility for one 2-year extension for a total of 5 years.

The L-1 is a temporary non-immigrant visa, meaning it does not grant you permanent residency in the U.S., and you will need to apply for extensions if you want to stay longer in the U.S..

Both the L-1A and L-1B are dual intent visas. This means that you can apply for other visas while you are here on an L-1, including visas that lead to permanent residence.

L-1 Visa holders can apply for a Green Card and permanent residence if they are eligible for EB-1, EB-2, or EB-3 employment visas.

EB-1 Visas are for those with extraordinary ability in their field, outstanding researchers and professors, and multinational executives and managers (which L-1A Visa holders may qualify as). You do not need an employer or offer of employment to be eligible for an EB-1. Find out more here.

EB-2 Visas are for those with exceptional ability in their field, advanced degrees, or who qualify for national interest waivers (which L-1B Visa holders may qualify as). You will need an offer of employment and obtain Labor Certification for this visa, unless you qualify for a national interest waiver.

EB-3 Visas are for skilled workers, professionals, and unskilled workers (which L-1B Visa holders may qualify as). You will need an offer of employment and obtain Labor Certification for this visa, unless you qualify for a national interest waiver.

Contact us to learn more.

Schedule your appointment and start your L-1 Visa application



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