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The L-1 category applies to aliens who work for a company with a parent, subsidiary, branch, or affiliate in the U.S. These workers come to the U.S. as intracompany transferees who are coming temporarily to perform services either

  • in a managerial or executive capacity (L-1A) or
  • which entail specialized knowledge (L-1B)

for a parent, branch, subsidiary or affiliate of the same employer that employed the professional abroad. The employee must have been employed abroad for the corporation, firm, or other legal entity (or an affiliate or subsidiary thereof) on a full-time basis for at least one continuous year out of the last three-year period to qualify. There is currently no annual cap on L-1 visas.

Note: The employer is not required to obtain a labor certification prior to petitioning in this category. Compensation level is not prescribed, but U.S. income must be sufficient to prevent the alien from becoming a public charge.


Dependents (i.e. spouses and unmarried children under 21 years of age) of L-1 workers are entitled to L-2 status with the same restrictions as the principal. Dependents may be students in the U.S. while remaining in L-2 status, Dependent spouses may apply for Employment Authorization Documents (EADs).

Petition Document Requirements

A U.S. employer or foreign employer may file the I-129 petition, but a foreign employer must have a legal business in the U.S.

The petition must be filed with:

  • Evidence of the qualifying relationship between the U.S. and the foreign employer which address ownership and control, such as an annual report, copies of articles of incorporation, financial statements, or stock certificates;
  • A letter from the alien's foreign qualifying employer detailing his or her dates of employment, job duties, qualifications and salary and demonstrating that the alien worked for the employer abroad for at least one continuous year within the three-year period before the filing of the petition in an executive or managerial capacity or in a position involving specialized knowledge; and
  • A detailed description of the proposed job duties and qualifications and evidence the proposed employment is in an executive or managerial capacity or in a position involving specialized knowledge.

If the alien is coming to the U.S. as a manager or executive (L-1A) to open or to be employed in a new office, also file the petition with evidence that:

  • Sufficient premises to house the new office have been secured;
  • The beneficiary has, or upon establishment will have, the qualifying relationship to the foreign employer and the qualifying position; and
  • The intended U.S. operation will be able to support the executive or managerial position within one year of the approval of the petition. This must be supported by information regarding:

1. the proposed nature of the U.S. office (size and scope, organizational structure, and financial goals),
2. financial information about the foreign entity (the size of the U.S. investment and the financial ability to remunerate the beneficiary and to commence doing business in the U.S.), and
3. the organizational structure of the foreign entity.

If the alien is coming to the U.S. in a specialized knowledge capacity (L-1B) to open or to be employed in a new office, also file the petition with evidence that:

  • Sufficient premises to house the new office have been secured;
  • The business entity in the U.S is or will be a qualifying organization
  • The petitioner has the financial ability to compensate the alien beneficiary and to begin doing business in the U.S.

Extending an Individual L-1 Petition
A petitioner may apply for an extension of an individual L-1 petition using Form I-129. Supporting documentation is not required, except in those cases involving new offices or when requested. For details, please refer to 8CFR 214.2(l)(14)(i).

Blanket L Petition

Employers who regularly file L petitions may wish to consider filing for a blanket L petition in order to obtain continuing approval for itself (and some or all of its parents, branches, subsidiaries and affiliates in the U.S.). This simplifies the process of approving and admitting additional individual L-1A and L-1B workers.

The blanket L petition must be filed by a U.S. employer who will be the single representative between INS and the qualifying organizations and must be filed with copies of evidence that the:

  • Petitioner and its branches, subsidiaries, and affiliates are engaged in commercial trade or services;
  • Petitioner has an office in the United States that has been doing business for one year or more;
  • Petitioner has 3 or more domestic and foreign branches, subsidiaries, or affiliates;
  • Petitioner and its qualifying organizations have obtained approved petitions for at least ten L-1 professionals during the previous year or have U.S. subsidiaries or affiliates with combined annual sales of at least 25 million dollars, or have a U.S. work force of at least 1,000 employees.

After approval of a blanket petition, the petitioner may file for individual employees to enter as L-1 professionals under the blanket petition. If the alien is outside the U.S., submit a completed Form I-129S and a copy of the Form I-797 (INS approval notice). If the alien is already in the U.S., the petitioner may file an I-129 to request a change of status, based on this blanket petition. An I-129 petition for a change of status must be filed with:

  • A copy of the approval notice for the blanket petition;
  • A letter from the alien's foreign employer detailing the alien’s dates of employment, job duties, qualifications and salary for the 3 previous years; and
  • If the alien is a specialized knowledge professional, a copy of a U.S. degree, a foreign degree equivalent to a U.S. degree, or evidence establishing the combination of the beneficiary's education and experience is the equivalent of a U.S. degree.


Checklist of Supporting Documents

  1. Complete copy of Beneficiary’s (and dependent family member’s) passport(s).
  2. Complete copies of any petition materials filed previously with USCIS on behalf of the beneficiary.
  3. List of all periods of stay in the U.S. in H or L classification by Beneficiary and dependent family members.
  4. Beneficiary’s Social Security Number
  5. Beneficiary’s address and telephone number abroad
  6. Updated Resume or C.V. of the Beneficiary.
  7. Detailed description of current position held by the Beneficiary at foreign company, including title and duties, and current salary.
  8. Detailed description of proposed position to be held by the Beneficiary in the U.S., including title and duties, and proposed salary.
  9. Evidence that the Beneficiary has been employed by the foreign entity for at least one of the past 3 years in the form of a letter from a representative of the foreign employer.
  10. Documents evidencing qualifying relationship between foreign entity and U.S. entity:
  11. Address of U.S. company and address where beneficiary will work (if different).
  12. Federal tax identification number of U.S. company.
  13. Recent gross and net annual income figures for U.S. company.
  14. Current number of employees of U.S. company.

For # 10, entities include:

  • Large Company - Statement from corporate officer detailing type of relationship (ownership and structure) and a copy of most recent Annual Report
  • Small Company - Statement from corporate officer detailing type of relationship (ownership and structure), corporate papers, accountant reports, tax returns, and stock
  • Partnership - Documents evidencing ownership and structure (partnership agreement and other documents establishing ownership)
  • Sole Proprietorship - Statement of owner with evidence identifying the owner (license to do business, IRS registration as employer, registration of business name, and business tax returns)


Qualifying as a Multinational Executive (L-1A)

  1. Corporate Organizational Charts (reflecting current position abroad and proposed position in the U.S. in terms of company hierarchy).
  2. Details concerning the Executive nature of the proposed position.

Qualifying as a Multinational Manager (L-1A)

  1. Corporate organizational charts (reflecting current position abroad and proposed position in the U.S. in terms of company hierarchy).
  2. Details concerning the number and level of people currently and to be supervised (if not managing a function) including their titles and whether the supervised positions are professional in nature
  3. Details concerning significance of function, division or subdivision being managed and to be managed, and the importance of function in relation to the product or service provided by the company (if managing a function).

Qualifying as Specialized Knowledge (L-1B)

  1. Details concerning the Beneficiary’s specialized knowledge of the company’s products and application and sale of such products in the international market, and details concerning the Beneficiary’s advanced knowledge of the company’s processes and procedures.
  2. Relevant company products brochures, proprietary system design manuals, proprietary operating manuals, etc.
  3. Copy of Beneficiary’s diploma if applying under Blanket L.

In Case of New U.S. Office

  1. Information concerning the proposed nature of the U.S. office (scope of entity, organizational structure and financial goals).
  2. Documents evidencing the size of the investment and financial ability of the foreign entity to remunerate the Beneficiary and to commence doing business in the U.S
  3. Lease of office space.
  4. Corporate bank statement for U.S. entity.
  5. Documents evidencing the business opportunities for the U.S. company (letters of intent, proposals, draft contracts, etc.).

In Case of Relatively New U.S. Office (less than one year)

  1. Documents evidencing U.S. business activities (quarterly tax statements, payroll records, client contracts, service statements, financial statements). 4233182v.1



Визы L-1:

Визы L-1А предназначены для тех, кто работал за пределами США в качестве руководителя (директора, менеджера) компании в течение как минимум 1 года из последних трех лет.

Визы L-1В предназначены для тех, кто работал за пределами США в течение как минимум 1 года из последних трех лет в качестве специалиста с определенной квалификацией и который намерен работать в аналогичной должности в компании США.

Aмериканскaя и иностранная компании могут иметь любую форму организации бизнеса - корпорация, партнерство, компания с ограниченной ответственностью или индивидуальное предприятие с единственным владельцем, но важно чтобы иностранная компания владела контрольным пакетом акций (хотя бы 51%)

Главное преимущество визы L-1 по сравнению с некоторыми другими визами в США является возможность трудиться на ту же организацию, но в другой стране, т.е. эта виза предостваит вам возможность использовать образование и знания полученные в вашей родной стране. Помимо этого, сопровождающие члены семьи получают подсобную визу (L-2) и супруги имеют право на работу в США. Немаловажным обстоятельством является то что визы L-1 предоставляют облегченную возможность получения гринкарты. Правда, эта возможность существует лишь для руководителей компании, но не для специалистов (которые в случае желания более перманентного статуса должны иметь рабочий гарант получаемый в министерстве труда).