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On Wednesday, January 29th 2020 President Trump officially signed the United States Mexico Canada Agreement into U.S. law following years of prolonged debate in Congress. The deal, which was first discussed and agreed upon as a NAFTA replacement in November 2018, now must be ratified by Canada in order to go into effect. Mexico already ratified the treaty in 2019.

The major trade deal will replace the 25 year old NAFTA agreement as a way to invigorate trade between the North American countries. There’s a number of provisions and details that outline how this trade deal will shape free trade in North America and across industries.

These effects include various policies affecting the automotive industry, U.S. agriculture, intellectual property and digital trade, newly added labor provisions protecting U.S. workers, and a sunset clause that details the policies of reviewing and revising such a deal, amongst numerous other details.

We have previously written about how the USMCA deal would reaffirm the TN NAFTA Professionals visa, a popular visa option for Mexican and Canadian professionals seeking to work in the United States. The visa allows the beneficiary to temporarily live and work in the United States as long as their occupation is eligible under NAFTA guidelines.

You may be eligible for a TN nonimmigrant visa if you are a citizen of Canada or Mexico, your profession qualifies under regulations, the position in the United States requires a NAFTA professional, you have a prearranged full-time or part-time job with a U.S. employer (not self-employed), and you have the qualifications needed to practice your profession.

Even though the countries agreed on a preliminary version of the deal in November 2018, the trade deal faced significant debate in Congress and across North America. After over a year of negotiations, Democrats and Republicans have modified the deal to include protections for American workers.

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