L-1A Visa: Global Executives Relocation

Leadership Mobility and Business Expansion


The L-1A Visa is a significant process in the realm of international labor mobility. This piece provides a comprehensive outlook for those interested in job opportunities abroad or international talent management within their companies.  


The L-1A Visa is a type of visa that allows US companies to transfer high-level executives or managers from their affiliated foreign offices to one of their offices in the United States. This visa facilitates personnel transfer within a multinational company, thus fostering the flow of talent and knowledge among different branches. 



Employer Requirements


For an employer to be eligible to apply for an L-1A Visa, they must meet specific requirements such as: 


Qualified corporate relationship: The company must have a qualified relationship with a foreign enterprise, which can be a branch, subsidiary, or affiliate. 


Business presence in the United States: The company must have a presence in the United States as an employer and conduct business in at least one other country, either directly or through an affiliated office. 


Requirements for establishing a new office: If the foreign company seeks to send an executive or manager to develop a new office in the United States, they must demonstrate access to suitable facilities to meet the business needs of the new branch. 


Employee Title: At the time of application, the transferred employee must have held the executive title for an entire year within the last three years.


Filing Form I-129: Both foreign and domestic employers applying for an L-1A Visa on behalf of their employees must submit Form I-129, Petition for a Non-immigrant Worker.


These requirements ensure that the L-1A Visa application meets specific criteria and facilitates the transfer of executives or managers within multinational companies. 



Qualified Employees and Stay Duration 


It’s essential to note that, to apply for an L-1A Visa, the employee must have worked for a qualified organization outside the United States for at least a full year within the previous three years. Additionally, the corresponding employee must intend to enter the United States as an executive or manager for a branch of the same company or one of its qualified organizations. 


Qualified employees entering the United States specifically to establish a new office have an initial stay of one year. All other qualified L-1A employees have a maximum initial stay of three years. L-1A Visa holders can request extensions, granting them additional time for up to two years per request until the employee reaches the combined maximum limit of seven years. 


Family members such as spouses and unmarried children under 21 can join the transferred employee in the United States. Family members wishing to accompany the transferred employee must apply for Non-immigrant Status L-2. Often, family members granted Non-immigrant Status L-2 are given the same period of stay as the L-1A employee they are joining in the US. 


If family members are already in the United States and wish to change their non-immigrant status, they can jointly file Form I-539. However, the application form to modify/extend Non-immigrant Status has a filing fee of $370 and a biometric fee of $85 per applicant. An immigration attorney can confirm the required fees based on your specific situation. 



Benefits of the L-1A Visa


The L-1A Visa offers several benefits for both employees and companies. Here’s a brief explanation of some of the benefits: 


Employee Transfer: The L-1A Visa allows companies to transfer employees, such as executives or managers, from a foreign branch to a branch in the United States. This facilitates the management of qualified and experienced personnel in different locations. 


Flexibility for Business Expansion: The L-1A Visa allows companies to expand their operations in the United States more seamlessly. They can also transfer trusted and experienced personnel from their foreign branches. 


Professional Development and Personal Growth: The L-1A Visa offers employees the opportunity to develop their professional skills and gain experience in an international environment, which can boost their career and personal growth. 


Possibility of Permanent Residency: L-1A Visa holders may be eligible to apply for a Green Card after a certain period of residence and work in the United States, allowing them to settle permanently in the country. 


Access to Education for Children: The children of L-1A Visa holders can attend US schools, allowing them to receive a high-quality education in an international environment. 


Spouses Eligible for Work: Spouses of L-1A Visa holders may be eligible to obtain a work permit in the United States, allowing them to work legally. 


Tax Benefits: L-1A Visa holders can benefit from specific favorable tax treatments, such as the ability to deduct certain relocation-related expenses. 


The L-1 Visa is vital for international labor mobility and business growth in an increasingly globalized world. Understanding its requirements, processes, and benefits is essential for those seeking to expand their professional horizons or recruit internationally. 


The best guidance is paramount in this intricate legal process of applying for the L-1A Visa. Oasis Legal Group is a trusted legal firm that can guide employers and employees through the requirements and procedures for a successful L-1A Visa application. With their expertise in immigration matters, Oasis Legal Group stands out as a reliable ally that ensures all forms are correctly filed and provides guidance every step of the way. 



Frequently Asked Questions


What is the L-1 Visa, and who is eligible to apply? 


The L-1 Visa is a temporary Work Visa that allows companies to transfer employees from a related foreign company to a company in the United States. Eligible employees include executives, managers, and employees with specialized knowledge. 


What are the types of L-1 Visas, and what is the difference between them? 


There are two main types of L-1 Visas: L-1A and L-1B. The L-1A is intended for executives and managers, while the L-1B is for employees with specialized knowledge. 


What are the basic requirements to obtain an L-1 Visa? 


The requirements vary depending on the type of visa, but generally, the employee must have worked for the foreign company for at least one year in the last three years, and both the foreign company and the company in the United States must be related. 


What is the duration of an L-1 Visa? 


The initial L-1 Visa is granted for up to three years and can be extended for a maximum of seven years for L-1A and a maximum of five years for L-1B.