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L Visas

L Visas: Bringing Your Foreign Employees to the U.S.

L-1 visas allow international companies to efficiently transfer their qualifying foreign national employees to the United States for period of up to 7 years. The L-1 visa specifically permits relocation for international executives, managers, and other employees with specialized knowledge so long as the international company satisfies certain requirements for its relationship with its U.S. counterpart.

Employee Eligibility:

In order to qualify to receive an L-1 visa, an employee must:
More specifically, there are two types of L-1 visas that may be issued to foreign employees:
This visa is initially granted for 3 years, so long as the qualifying U.S. company has been in existence for more than one year (see below for information on new companies) and can be extended in two year increments resulting in a total stay of seven years or less.
This visa is also initially granted for 3 years, so long as the qualifying U.S. company has been in existence for more than one year and can be extended one time for two years resulting in a total stay of only five years or less.
In contrast to the L1-A visas which are intended for higher-ranking employees, USCIS has determined that the L-1B visa focuses on the employees interaction with the company’s product, service, research, equipment, techniques, management, or other interests and its application in international markets, or an advanced level of knowledge or expertise in the organization’s processes and procedures. Due to the intricacies of proving specialized knowledge, L-1B petitions are typically scrutinized more heavily by USCIS than L-1A.

Company Eligibility:

Note: L-1 employers are not limited to for-profit corporations. Non-profits, charitable organizations, and religious organization are also eligible.
Note: Premium Processing, i.e. 15 day rush processing, is available for L-1 visas.
Certain large companies may petition USCIS for “blanket” L-1 visas to allow it to easily transfer employees into the U.S. For more information please visit our page.
Foreign companies looking to expand business into the U.S. for the first time require additional considerations to receive approval from USCIS for L-1 visas. For more information please visit our page.
Spouses of L-1 visa holders and any unmarried children under the age of 21 may accompany the L-1 visa holder to the U.S. using an L-2 visa. L-2 spouses may seek employment in the U.S. by filing for employment authorization (EAD) after arrival. L-2 children may not be employed but both spouses and children are permitted to study while in the U.S. L-2 visas are also considered dual intent and L-2 holders may apply for green cards at the same time as the L-1 visa holder. For more information about bringing dependents to the U.S. on non-immigrant visas please visit.