L-1 Visas

Another common option for aliens wishing to work temporarily in the United States, with the option of ultimately obtaining Employment Based Permanent Residency is the L-1 Intracompany Transferee Visa. In order to be eligible for an L-1 Visa, the Intracompany Transferee must have already worked for a foreign company that has a subsidiary, parent, affiliate, or branch in the U.S. Specifically, the L-1 Beneficiary must have been employed outside of the United States for the corporation, subsidiary, or affiliate on a full-time basis for at least one year (continuous) out of the most recent three years in order to qualify.

Moreover, the L-1 Beneficiary enters the U.S. to perform services either in a managerial or executive capacity (L-1A) or which entails specialized knowledge (L-1B).

Unlike H Visas, at the present time, there is no annual maximum or cap on L-1 visas. Moreover, unlike H Visas, the employer is not mandated to obtain a certified labor condition application with the USDOL prior to petitioning in the L-1 category. Furthermore, unlike H Visas the level of compensation is not specified by the USDOL, but the income while in the U.S. must be enough as to prevent the individual wanting an L-1 visa from being taken care of at the public’s expense, or a public charge.

L-2 Dependents

L-2 Dependents are defined as children (unmarried) under 21 years of age or spouses of L-1 workers. L-2 Dependents may attend school. L-2 spouses are employment authorized, but L-2 dependant children are prohibited from working.

Filing the L-1 Petition with USCIS

The L-1 Petition filed with the USCIS by the U.S. Employer-Petitioner must include:

  1. Proof of the corporate relationship between the U.S. based business entity and the foreign employer;
  2. A letter from the L-1 Beneficiary 's foreign qualifying employer detailing her or his employment information, including dates of employment, job description, qualifications, duties, and salary and establishing that the L-1 Beneficiary worked for the foreign employer for no less than one year (continuous) within the three-year period immediately preceding the filing of the petition; and
  3. A description of the L-1 Beneficiary 's proposed job qualifications, duties, and proof that the proposed position of employment is in a managerial or executive capacity or that the L-1 Beneficiary’s position requires specialized skills and/or knowledge.
Opening New Office in the United States

One benefit of the L-1 Intracompany Transferee Visa is that a new office can be opened in the United States which becomes the domestic petitioner for the L-1 Beneficiary. In this context, the L-1 Beneficiary enters the U.S. as a manager or executive (L-1A) to open or to be employed in a new office. The following evidence must also be included with the petition:

  1. Proof of physical premises for the new office;
  2. Evidence that the beneficiary has the requisite relationship to the foreign corporation (employer) and the qualifying position; and
  3. Proof that the intended U.S. based entity will be able to financially support the L-1 Beneficiary within one year of the granting of the petition. Note: The initial L-1 Visa for a new office is valid for one year, at which point an L-1 Extension Petition should be filed at the end of that first year to show that the new U.S. office continues to justify the L-1 Beneficiary’s position.
Blanket L Petition

Companies that obtain many L-1 Visas may be eligible to obtain Blanket L Petitions in order to expedite the process of obtaining future L-1 Visas for its foreign employees.

A blanket L petition is filed with USCIS and must include evidence that the:

  • U.S. employer/petitioner has been doing business for at least one year in the United States;
  • U.S. employer/Petitioner has at least 3 domestic and foreign branches, subsidiaries, or affiliates; and
  • U.S. employer/Petitioner has obtained approved petitions for ten or more L-1 professionals during the most recent year or have U.S. divisions or subsidiaries or affiliates with combined annual sales of 25 million dollars or more, or have a U.S. work force of 1,000 employees or more.

Once a Blanket L Approval is obtained from USCIS, the Petitioner can then file for individual employees to enter via the Blanket L Petition, which must include.

  1. The approval notice for the blanket L petition;
  2. A letter from the L-1 Beneficiary 's foreign qualifying employer detailing employment start and end dates, qualifications, job duties, and salary and establishing that the L-1 Beneficiary worked for the foreign employer for at least one continuous year within the three-year period before the filing of the petition; and
  3. A description of the L-1 Beneficiary 's proposed job duties and qualifications and evidence the proposed employment is in an executive or managerial capacity or in a position involving specialized knowledge.
How Do I File for an L Intracompany Transferee Visa?

The Law Offices of Nishan C. Mahendran, P.A. will be pleased to process your L-1 Intracompany Visa Petition on behalf of an alien worker or an employer. Our law office will carefully analyze your case and make recommendations on the most appropriate process for you or your company to pursue. We then assist with preparing documents and letters, continuing the case either in the country or through consular processing, until the principal applicant and family members receive their L-1Visa and corresponding accompanying L-2 Visas for the accompanying family members. Please contact us online or at 954-620-2028 today.

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