If you are working as an executive or manager at an office that is affiliated to a U.S. employer, you can be transferred to a U.S. office of that employer through the L-1A visa. Also, if you are working in a company that does not have an affiliated office in the USA, you can be sent to the United States as an executive or manager, in order to establish one.
L1A Visa Benefits
1) Migrate with spouse and children
2) Applicants can opt for premium processing to have their application processed within 15 days
3) No labor certification required – leads to shorter waiting period
4) The visa holder can eventually transition to Green Card status
5) Companies can transfer several workers to the U.S. office by filing blanket petitions
L1A Visa Eligibility Criteria for Employees
1) Generally, the employee should have been working for a qualifying organization – parent company, affiliate, branch or subsidiary of the U.S. employer, located outside the USA – for at least one year within the three years preceding entry to the USA.
2) The employee should be wishing to enter the USA to provide services in an executive or managerial capacity, for a U.S. branch or qualifying organization of the foreign company.
Executive capacity implies an ability to take decisions of wide latitude without much supervision.
Managerial capacity implies an ability to control and supervise work done by professional employees, and manage an organization or a component, function, subdivision or department of the organization. It may also imply the ability to manage an essential function of an organization – without direct supervision – at a high level.
L1A Visa Requirements for Employers
1) The U.S. employer must have a parent company, affiliate, branch or subsidiary located overseas.
2) The employer should be regularly, continuously and systematically providing goods and/or services within the USA as well as at least one other country – either directly or through a qualifying organization – throughout the period while the employee is living in the USA as an L1 Visa The business should be viable, but need not be engaged in international trade.
In case a foreign employer is sending an executive or managerial employee to set up a new U.S. office, the employer must also meet the following requirements:
1) Secure sufficient physical office premises in the USA,
2) Prove that the employee has been working in a managerial or executive capacity for one year within the three years preceding the application.
3) Within one year of application approval, the new U.S. office should support a managerial or executive position.
L1A Visa Duration
For most employees, the L1A visa is initially valid for a three year period. However, for those who are entering the USA to set up a new office for a foreign employer, the USA business visa is initially valid for one year. All L-1A visa holders can extend their stay for up to two additional years at a time, until they complete seven years in the USA. During or after this period, they can apply for a Green Card.
L1A Visa Process
The employer has to submit a Form I-129 (Petition for a Nonimmigrant Worker), as well as the associated fee and required evidence, on behalf of the employee, to U.S. immigration and Citizenship Services.
L1A Processing Time
As of April 2021, the Form I-129 processing time for intra company transfer was between 3.5 to 5.5 months. The processing time for blanket petitions was between 4 weeks to 4 months.
L1A Visa Fees
The filing fee for the Form I-129 is $460.
How Can Abhinav Help You?
If you are an employer or employee planning to facilitate an intra-company transfer to the USA, the process can prove complex. The requirements, documentation and preparation leading up to application submission demand expertise and an eye for detail. At Abhinav, we guide you through each step of the process – from eligibility assessment and documentation support to fine-tuning the petition and coordinating with the visa authorities – based on learnings accumulated over nearly three decades of experience. Receiving professional assistance enhances the quality of your application and ensures that each of your claims is backed by strong evidence – which ultimately increases the chances of visa approval. For more information on the L1 visa category or other business immigration options, contact our seasoned consultants by calling 8595338595 or writing to [email protected]