Working for a US Affiliate of Current Employer
Here’s a scenario. For the past two years you have been working as a manager for a company in Vancouver, let’s call it New co. New co. is now ready to expand its U.S. operations and needs you at the Washington office ASAP to supervise workers and grow the business. If this sounds similar to your situation, then the L-1 Visa may be right for you!
The L-1 Visa category facilitates the transfer of employees from a foreign company to a U.S. affiliate. To be eligible for a L-1, the employee needs to have been continuously employed by the foreign company, in an executive, managerial, or specialized knowledge capacity, for at least one year in the preceding three years. Spouses and children of L-1 Visa holders may also secure dependent status. The L-1 category is separated into two subcategories, L-1A and L-1B.
- L-1A is for employees performing managerial or executive assignments in the U.S. Generally, the maximum duration of stay is 7 years.
- L-1B is for employees performing specialized assignments in the U.S. Generally, the maximum duration of stay is five years.
For an employee to transfer from their current office to a U.S. office, there must be a qualifying relationship between the organizations. Possible qualifying relationships include: 1) parent/subsidiary, 2) parent/branch office, or 3) affiliates. A L-1 Visa may also be secured to set up a new office in the U.S. If a company is consistently petitioning employees for L-1 status, a blanket petition can be used to speed up the process.
An L-1 Visa could be a good first step to a green card. If you think you are well-suited for the L-1 category, give Silver Immigration a call and find out more!