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L-1 Visa Attorney in New Jersey

New Jersey Immigration Lawyer

The L-1 intra-company transferee visa is available to foreign citizens who have worked abroad for one continuous year within the preceding three years in an executive, managerial, or specialized knowledge capacity, and who are also being temporarily transferred to the U.S. to work in a similar capacity in affiliation with the same organization. Evidence of the qualifying relationship, proof of employment abroad and a detailed description of the job duties, qualifications and requirements will be required by USCIS to approve the petition. During the transfer, spouses and children under 21 may accompany the L-1 visa holder, and are also eligible for employment.

Manager Defined:

1. Manages the organization, or a department, subdivision, function or component of the organization;

2. Supervises and controls the work of other supervisory, professional, or managerial employees, or manages an essential function within the organization, or department or subdivision of the organization;

3. Has the authority to hire and fire as well as other personnel actions.

Executive Capacity Defined:

1. Directs the management of the organization or a major component or function of the organization;

2. Establishes the goals and policies of the organization, component or function

3. Exercises wide latitude in discretionary decision-making; and

4. Receives only general supervision or direction from higher level executives, the board of directors or stockholders of the organization.

Specialized Knowledge Defined:
Special knowledge is knowledge possessed by an individual of the petitioning organization's product, service, research, equipment, techniques, management, or other interests and its application to international markets, or an advanced level of knowledge or expertise in the organization's process and procedures.

Conversion to Permanent Residence
In certain circumstances, L-1 visas for executives and managers may be converted to lawfully permanent resident status. However, the applicant must show that they intend to depart the U.S. when the stay is over.

Time Limitation
Individual petitions may be granted for up to three years, with a possible extension of two years for all L's and another two years beyond that for all executives and managers.

Business Abroad Must Continue
The petitioner must be doing business in the U.S. and at least one other country for the duration of the stay. Both the U.S. and the foreign company must be active.

New Businesses
Persons coming to open up a new office in the U.S. will only be granted a one-year stay in the US. The USCIS also typically requires additional information about the plans for the new office such as proof that office space has been obtained, a business plan has been developed, the applicant has had the appropriate experience with the foreign company and that the foreign company will remain in existence during the full period of the applicant's transfer to the U.S. If the company wants to have the L-1 visa extended beyond the initial year, it will have to demonstrate that it has proceeded with the plans outlined in the initial petition.

The USCIS will scrutinize cases where the transferred employee also has an ownership interest in the company, since the USCIS may not believe the owner intends to ever leave the U.S. The U.S. employer will need to show that the firm's need for the transferee is not indefinite and that the transferee's foreign business interests are a strong lure for the person to return home upon the expiration of the transferee's stay in the U.S.

Petition Requirements

United States and foreign employers may file the petition. However, a foreign employer must have a business entity in the United States. Filed petitions must include the following:

1. Evidence of a substantial relationship between the United States and foreign employer derived from ownership and/or control, such as:

  • An annual report;
  • Articles of incorporation;
  • Financial statements;
  • Copies of stock certificates

2. A letter from the foreign employer that explains the following information about the individual:

  • Dates of employment;
  • Job duties;
  • Qualifications;
  • Salary;
  • Proof that the individual worked for at least one continuous year within a period of three years that preceded the filing of the petition;
  • A description of the individual's job duties, work qualifications, and evidence that the job is an executive, managerial or specialized knowledge position

If the individual is opening a new office in the United States, the petition must include evidence that the business is in the United States, and:

  • Has sufficient property to house the office;
  • Currently has, or upon the business being established, a relationship with the foreign employer
  • Has the financial capacity to start doing business in the United States, which includes showing:
    • The amount of investment;
    • The structure of organization in each business;
    • The size and condition of the foreign employer's finances;
  • If the individual is petitioning as an L-1 manager or executive seeking to open a new office, the evidence must establish that the operation in the United States will support the individual's position within one year's time.

Get Help from a L-1 Visa Immigration Lawyer in New Jersey

If you are looking to obtain an L-1 visa for the United States, The Law Offices of Lloyd E. Bennett, Esq., P.C. has the skill and knowledge needed in order to properly prepare your application for approval by the USCIS. Our New Jersey immigration attorney has helped thousands of people obtain visas since 1987 and has the immigration law experience to help you. Please contact us today for assistance.