The L1 visa is a non – immigrant visa which is issued to the employees of an international company which has offices located both in the employee’s home country and the United States. In other words, L1 visa can be called a work visa which is issued to the foreign employees of international organizations to bring their employees to United States to work in their offices located within United States.
If the international company requires the foreign employee to work in the United States, then the employee will be allowed to enter United States with the L1 working visa. Generally the L1 visa is valid for 3 years, and if required the foreign employee may file for an extension of another two years.
There are many eligibility requirements to be met by the foreign employee if he or she wishes to enter the United States on a L1 visa.
- The foreign employee must have worked in his or her home country for a continuous period of 1 year in the last 3 years.
- The foreign employee must have been employed in a executive or a managerial position or in a position involving specialized knowledge.
- The foreign employee must enter United States in a L1 work visa to work in an executive, managerial or specialized knowledge position.
- The foreign employee must leave the United States once his or her authorized stay expires.
Apart from this the US company must satisfy few requirements for the employee to be eligible to enter United States.
- The overseas company must be related to the company in the United States in a specific manner. The foreign international company where the employee has been employed must be the same employer or subsidiary or affiliate or a parent company.
- The US company must be doing business in the United States and one other country during the transfer.
The US employer must file the petition with USCIS on behalf of the foreign employee. The petitioner must file Form I 120. The employer must include a letter from the company which supports the petition along with the required supporting documents and the filing fee. If the family members wish to move to United States along with the principal beneficiary (the foreign employee), a separate application must be filed for the family members. Once the petition has been approved, the family members must file a petition at the US embassy or consulate to obtain visa entry.
All the L1 visa petitions must be filed with the USCIS. The USCIS will review the petitions and the supporting documents. If they find any unsatisfactory information, the process will be delayed or the petition might be even rejected. Once USCIS approves the petition, the approved petition will be sent to the US consulate where the foreign employee will be able to obtain the L1 visa to enter the United States. If the foreign employee is already in the United States in another non – immigrant category, he or she may change the status.