If you want us to process your L-1 petition, please submit information as per format below:
- The L-1 visa is a useful vehicle for multi-national companies seeking to transfer high-level managers, executives and employees with specialized knowledge from overseas to provide services to a related entity in the U.S.
- This visa also allows an intracompany executive or manager to come to the U.S. to establish a new business.
- L-1 status is available to persons who have worked abroad for one continuous year within the preceding three years. Brief visits to the United States for business or pleasure do not interrupt the one year of employment abroad, but they do not count toward the fulfillment of the requirement.
- The employment abroad must have been in an executive, management, or specialized knowledge capacity. The L-1 transferee does not need to work in the United States in the same capacity as abroad. For example, a manager abroad could be transferred to the United States, in a specialized knowledge capacity, or vice versa.
- A 2002 memorandum issued by the USCIS reiterated and clarified the position on what constitutes specialized knowledge. The test for specialized knowledge tests on a product or process within a particular company. The alien should possess a type of specialized or advanced knowledge that is different from that generally found in the particular industry. The knowledge need not be proprietary or unique. Where the alien has specialized knowledge of the company or product, the knowledge must be noteworthy or uncommon.
- USCIS recognizes that a foreign national on L-1 status may have the dual intent of immigrating to the United States while still intending to comply with his or her Nonimmigrant status.
- The L-1 classification is petition based. The U.S. employer must file the petition on form I-129 with the “L” Supplement and approved by the USCIS before the foreign national can obtain an L-1 visa. The employers may utilize the premium processing program to expedite USCIS action on an L-1 petition.
- The L-1 status will only be valid for the period of the petition’s validity. Individual petitions may be granted for up to three years, with a possible two-year extension for all L employees and two-year extension beyond that for managers and executives.
- The L-1 blanket petition provisions permit intracompany employees to apply for L-1 visas directly at the U.S.Embassies abroad without the prior approval by USCIS of an individual petition. This is possible only when the prescribed requirements are met with.
- Spouses and minor children of L-1 nonimmigrant may enter the U.S. in L-2 status. L-2 status spouses only and not children are eligible for employment.
- After being admitted in L-2 status, the spouse of an L-1 nonimmigrant must apply to the USCIS for an Employment Authorization Document (EAD).
- The status of an L-2 dependant is subject to the same period of admission and limitations as the principal L-1 alien.
Frequently Asked Questions
L-1 Visa Questions
What is the L-1 Visa?
What is the L-1 visa?
How do I qualify for the L-1 visa?
- The U.S. Company to which you are being transferred must be a branch, subsidiary, affiliate or joint venture partner of your non-U.S. employer
- Employment in the U.S. Company must be as a Manager, Executive or person with specialized knowledge and skills.
What benefits do I enjoy on an L-1 visa?
- Be quickly issued your visa, transferred to the U.S. and work legally for a U.S. company. Be permitted to travel in and out of the U.S. or remain here continuously until your L-1 status expires.
- Avail yourself of visas for accompanying family member (spouse and children under the age of 21).
- Apply for a permanent residency/ Green card through employment and skip a major step of the labor certification process.
What are the limitations of the L-1 visa?
- Work only for the U.S. employer who sponsored your L-1 visa.
- L-1 visa status is limited initially to a maximum three year term. An extension for a person with specialized knowledge (L-1B) is limited to only a two year extension (5 years total on L-1B). For Managers and Executives (L-1A), extensions may be granted in increments of two year terms but only up to seven years of total L-1-A status.
What is the difference between L-1A visa and L-1B visa?
The L-1B visa is for employees with specialized knowledge of the company’s products or procedures. L-1B employees will have to go through the process of Labor Certification when applying for green card.
What is the processing time for L-1 visa?
Can I extend my stay on the L-1 visa?
Who can qualify as an L-1 Executive?
How do you define a Manager & an Executive for L-1 visa purposes?
Executive capacity is an assignment “within an organization in which the employee primarily: (i) directs the management of the organization; (ii) establishes the goals and policies of the organization; (iii) exercises wide latitude in discretionary decision-making; and (iv) receives only general supervision or direction from higher level executives, the Directors, or Stockholders of the organization.”
What is the minimum educational requirement and experience for an executive or manage to be eligible for L-1 Visa?
Can L-1 petition be filed outside the U.S.?
Can I come to the U.S. on a visitor visa or Visa Waiver while the L-1 petition is being processed?
Can I travel after applying for the Green Card on L-1 status?
What is the visa status granted to the dependents of L-1 visa holders?
Can my dependents work in the U.S. on L-1 visa?
Is there a requirement to pay L-1 holder the prevailing wage?
Once the L-1 petition is approved, can I create a new corporation and purchase a new business under this newly formed corporation?
What is L-1 Blanket petition?