An employee who has a specialized knowledge and currently is an managerial or executive employee at a foreign company may be able to earn a L-1 visa per request of the employer. A L-1 visa transferred to a branch or subsidiary of the company that is located in the United States. In order to be considered for a L-1 visa, the employee must have spent one year within the past three years working for the same employer requesting their L-1 visa. A L-1 visa holder is usually called an intracompany transferee. This type of visa is only a temporary nonimmigrant visa. Spouses and children of a L-1 visa holder are usually eligible for a L-2 visa.
A multinational company may obtain an L-1 visa to send a managerial or executive employee to the United States to open a new office here. The foreign employer must lease an office space and provide a business plan proving that the company will be able to support a managerial or executive employee within a year of approval of the petition. The employer must file an I-129 form, Petition for a Nonimmigrant Worker, with fee, on behalf of the employee.
General Qualification to be met by Employer:
- Employer must have a qualifying relationship with a foreign company (parent company, branch, subsidiary, or affiliate, collectively referred to as qualifying organizations)
- Employer must be currently or in the process of running a business as an employer in the United States and in at least one other country directly or through a qualifying organization for the duration of the beneficiary’s stay in the United States as an L-1.
Period of Stay
Qualified employees entering the United States to establish a new office will be allowed a maximum initial stay of one year. All other qualified employees will be allowed a maximum initial stay of three years. For all L-1A employees, requests for extension of stay may be granted in increments of two additional years, until the employee has reached the maximum limit of seven additional years.
In the beginning L-1 visas were created with large multinational companies to relocate foreign employees to the United States. However, recently it has have shifted to include small or start-up companies who are abroad in hopes to help expand their business and services. Our experienced and knowledgeable attorneys at the Law Offices of Gary J. Kim, our clients will be assured by the numerous clients we have successfully obtained L-1 visas by providing our commitment and services.