The L-1A visa is a great option for foreign business executives and managers wanting to come to the United States because it does not require or depend on any certain initial investment amount, it allows for flexibility to operate any type or size of business in United States and it allows for a direct path to applying for permanent residence while maintaining L-1 status. The L-1 visa is actually a very desirable visa for foreign executives or managers, regardless of company size. This is a somewhat complex visa application, so strategic planning and solid documentation are key to a successful petition for the L-1A visa. We strongly recommend that you consult with an experienced immigration attorney if you are interested in applying for the L-1A visa.
If you are the manager or executive of a foreign company, and you wish to come to the United States to work as a manager or executive of an American company that is related to the foreign company, you are a good candidate for the L-1A visa. The American company may be a new start-up company or it could be an existing business, but there must be an ownership relationship between the American company and the foreign company. Noteworthy, is that both companies do not have to provide the same services or goods. For example, the foreign company may be a hair salon, and the related company may be a restaurant.
If you have been the executive or manager of the foreign company for at least 1 year in the past 3 years, you may be eligible to come to the United States on the L-1A visa to direct or manage the American company. The L-1A visa is issued for 2 years if the U.S company is already in operation, or 1 year if the U.S. company is a new start-up. This visa is renewable for up to 7 years. The spouse and children of the L-1A visa holder would be eligible to stay, work and go to school on an L2 visa. The L-1A visa may also provide a path to permanent residence (green card) for the spouse and children under 21 years of age.
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