L-1 visas

The L-1 category applies to aliens who work for a company with a parent, subsidiary, branch, or affiliate in the U.S. These workers come to the U.S. as intracompany transferees who are coming temporarily to perform services either

  • in a managerial or executive capacity (L-1A) or
  • which entail specialized knowledge (L-1B) for a parent, branch, subsidiary or affiliate of the same employer that employed the professional abroad. The employee must have been employed abroad for the corporation, firm, or other legal entity (or an affiliate or subsidiary thereof) on a full-time basis for at least one continuous year out of the last three-year period to qualify. While employer does not have to pay prevailing wage to the L-1 visa holder,there must be sufficient U.S. income to prevent the alien from becoming a public charge.Petition Document RequirementsA U.S. employer or foreign employer may file the I-129 petition, but a foreign employer must have a legal business in the U.S.The petition must be filed with: * Evidence of the qualifying relationship between the U.S. and the foreign employer which address ownership and control, such as an annual report, copies of articles of incorporation, financial statements, or stock certificates;
  • A letter from the alien's foreign qualifying employer detailing his or her dates of employment, job duties, qualifications and salary and demonstrating that the alien worked for the employer abroad for at least one continuous year within the three-year period before the filing of the petition in an executive or managerial capacity or in a position involving specialized knowledge; and A detailed description of the proposed job duties and qualifications and evidence the proposed employment is in an executive or managerial capacity or in a position involving specialized knowledge. If the alien is coming to the U.S. as a manager or executive (L-1A) to open or to be employed in a new office, also file the petition with evidence that: * Sufficient premises to house the new office have been secured; The beneficiary has, or upon establishment will have, the qualifying relationship to the foreign employer and the qualifying position; and
  • The intended U.S. operation will be able to support the executive or managerial position within one year of the approval of the petition. This must be supported by information regarding:
    1. the proposed nature of the U.S. office (size and scope, organizational structure, and financial goals),
    2. financial information about the foreign entity (the size of the U.S. investment and the financial ability to remunerate the beneficiary and to commence doing business in the U.S.), and
    3. the organizational structure of the foreign entity. If the alien is coming to the U.S. in a specialized knowledge capacity (L-1B) to open or to be employed in a new office, also file the petition with evidence that: * Sufficient premises to house the new office have been secured;
  • The business entity in the U.S is or will be a qualifying organization.
  • The petitioner has the financial ability to compensate the alien beneficiary and to begin doing business in the U.S.