L1-A Visa is an attractive option for firms to transfer managers to offices in the United States.
A company that operates both in the United States and abroad could
transfer their foreign employees to the U.S. through the use of a L1-A visa. The
L1-A visa is a non-immigrant visa for executives and managers who hold
positions with significant supervisory responsibility in a company that has a
subsidiary, parent, or affiliate branch outside of the U.S. In order to be eligible for
the visa, an applicant must have worked at a qualified business for at least one
year in the three-year period leading up to submitting an application. The USCIS
grants approvals for up to three years at a time for a maximum stay of seven
A blanket petition for L1 visas can reduce the processing times for future employee transfer.
Given they meet specific criteria, large multinational entities are able to file
for a L1 blanket petition. Doing so makes the process of transferring large
numbers of L1 eligible foreign nationals to the United States easier and quicker.
After approval, employers do not have to prove their eligibility for each individual
petition. Companies are only eligible for a blanket petition if they qualify for the
requirements of being an L1 petitioner and if they meet additional requirements.
The basic requirements of an L1 petitioner are that they have a qualifying
relationship with a foreign company and are doing business in the US and in a
foreign country for the entirety of the visa holder’s stay in the U.S. Additionally, to
obtain a L blanket approval a petitioner must be engaged in commercial trade or
services, have an office in the United States that has been doing business for at
least a year, and have three or more domestic and foreign branches,
subsidiaries, or affiliates. Lastly, the organization must have obtained approval of
petitions for at least ten employees holding either an L1-A or L1-B visa, have
combined annual sales of at least $25 million between U.S. subsidiaries or
affiliates, or have a workforce of at least 1,000 employees.
A spouse of an L1-A visa holder will be able to work in the United States.
Dependents, children under the age of 21 and spouses, of a L1-A visa
holder are able to apply for a L2 visa. The visa will remain valid for the entire
duration of the L1 visa holder’s eligibility. A spouse is able to work in the United
States using her L2 status if she obtains an Employment Authorization Document
first. Dependent children do not qualify for work authorization, but are allowed to
attend school during their stay in the country.
Obtaining an L1-A visa in a new office has a few different requirements.
An office is considered newly formed if it has been operating in the U.S.
for less than one year. Applicants who work at a new office are initially only
granted a L1-A visa for a single year; however, at the end of that year they will be
able to renew their visa for up to three years. The major difference for a new
office seeking to transfer employees on a L1-A visa is that the required business
plan is especially important. The business plan serves to prove that the company
is large enough to support the executive position. Having L1-A visa in a new
office renewed is largely based on how many new employees have been hired
and can often be more difficult.
Without losing visa status, a L1-A visa holder can obtain a permanent residency in the United States.
EB1-C is a category under the Employment-Based Visa, which was
created specifically for multinational executives and managers. The advantage to
trying to obtain a green card on a L1-A visa is that a person holding a L1-A visa
is allowed to have immigrant intent and the requirements
Interested in finding out more? This D’Alessio Law Group blog is here to educate our readers on all work visa topics but we understand that sometimes this can create more questions. We can guide you through the steps you need to take in order to be informed about your visa options. Give our office a call at (310) 909-3934 or e-mail email@example.com for more information so we can book you a consultation with one of our attorneys!