Applying for an L-1A Visa in the U.S.
What is an L1 Visa?
The L-1 visa allows for a foreign executive to be transferred to the United States for the purpose of opening a company or working as an executive in a company that is already operating within the United States.
The L-1 visa is a non-immigrant visa, which means that the executive always intends to “return to his country of origin”, and in much like the EB-1 visa with regards to the requirements, and for this reason, people who have an approved L-1 visa are also eligible to apply for American residency (Green card).
The L-1A is a non-immigrant visa with the following qualifications.
- The employer must be an organization where both the U.S. office and foreign office have a corporate relationship where there is a subsidiary, affiliate, parent, or branch relationship. The employer has to already be doing or will be doing regular business in the U.S. and at least one other country during the employee’s time in the U.S
- The employee should no less than a year of continuous work abroad with the foreign branch within the last three years and be seeking to enter as an executive or a manager
Requirements to make an application include:
- The executive applying for the L-1 visa must have worked in the foreign company for a minimum of 1 year in the last 3 years.
- The foreign company and the US company must be linked by a branch, subsidiary, or something of the kind.
- The foreign company must, at the time of application, have a branch that is fully operation in the United States
- The company must have a dedicated business plan for its American branch.
This visa allows the holder to reside in the US for up to one year, with a maximum initial stay of three years. Extensions are granted for up to either five or seven years in total. Under a L-1 visa, spouses and unmarried children under 21 may also accompany the worker.
To begin your application, the employer must file a Form I-129 which includes a fee, on the behalf of their employee.