What is a L Visa for Intracompany Transfers?

The Intracompany Visas are used to transfer managerial or executive (L-1A) and specialized knowledge (L-1B) workers from foreign companies to provide services in a similar capacity to a related company in the U.S. The foreign employees must have been employed continuously abroad for one year within the past three years by a parent, branch, affiliate or subsidiary of U.S. company.

Employment by a firm, corporation or other legal entity includes profit, nonprofit, religious and charitable organizations.  Full time U.S. employment is not required, but employee must dedicate a significant portion of time on a regular and systematic basis to the employer. However, employee must have continuous full-time employment for the one year preceding U.S. entry with foreign related employer.

Majority or substantial stockholder of U.S. and/or foreign company can be L-1 visa holder, but submit evidence that his or her services will be temporary, and that he will be transferred abroad upon completion of the temporary U.S. assignment. An employee must have been a manager, executive or have worked in specialized knowledge capacity abroad.  The transferree does not have to be transferred to the U.S. in the same capacity in which he or she was employed abroad.

Managerial capacity is an assignment with an organization in which the employee primarily:

(a) manages the organization, department, subdivision, function or component;

(b) 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;

(c) has authority to hire and fire or recommends personnel actions (if other employees directly supervised), or if no direct supervision, functions at a senior level within hierarchy of as to function managed; and

(d) excercises discretion over day-to-day operations of the activity or function.

First line supervisors are not considered mangers unless the employee they supervise are professionals.

Executive capacity is an assignment in an organization in which the employee primarily:

(a) directs the management of the organization or a major component or function;

(b) establishes goals and policies;

(c) exercises wide latitude in discretionary decision making; and

(d) receives only general supervision or direction from higher level executives, board of directors or stockholders.

Specialized knowledge includes specialized knowledge of the company’s product, service, research, equipment, techniques, management or other interests and its application in international markets, or has an advanced level of knowledge of processes and procedures of the company.  It includes a type of specialized or advanced knowledge that is different for that generally found in a particular industry, but need not be proprietary or unique.

An employer which meets the following requirements may file a blanket petition seeking continuing approval of itself and some or all of its parent, branches, subsidiaries, and affiliates as qualifying organizations if:
(a) employer has office and has been doing business in U.S. for one year;
(b) employer has 3 or more domestic and foreign branches, subsidiaries or affiliates;
(c) employer and each of those entities are engaged in commercial trade or services;
(d) combined U.S. annual sales of $25 million, U.S. workforce of 1,000 or received approval of at least 10 L petitions in last 12 months;
(e) employee must work abroad for parent, affiliate or subsidiary for 12 months;
(f) nonprofit organizations cannot file blanket petitions.

Petition is approved for 3 years. I a new office, it’s approved for one year, and thereafter for 2-year increments.  There is a 7-year maximum for L-1A visa and a 5-year maximum for L-1B visa.  Spouses and children receive L-2 visa.  Spouse with L-2 visa is eligible for employment authorization document.

For more information and help with your L visa application, call L visa attorney in Phoenix at 480-425-2009 or send us email TODAY and schedule a CONSULTATION!