L-1A and L-1B Visas

L-1A and L-1B VisasImmigration Attorneys Dedicated to Serving the Boston Area

The skilled business immigration lawyers at Maiona Ward work diligently on behalf of clients in Boston and the surrounding communities. We understand that these matters can be critical to the future of everyone involved. Qualified individuals wishing to enter the United States to work may seek a non-immigrant employment visa. There are many different non-immigrant visas, however, and determining which of them is suited to your situation can be challenging. We can help you understand your options and the impact that each of them might have on your needs and goals.

L-1A and L-1B Status

An L-1 visa is a non-immigrant status designed for a business looking to expand into the U.S. or for individuals who are being transferred to an existing American company. In order to qualify, the visa holder must have worked outside the U.S. for one full year within the three years immediately prior to applying for the L-1 status. This work experience must have been on a full-time basis.

There are two types of L-1 visas: L-1A and L-1B. An L-1A visa allows a U.S. employer to transfer an executive or manager from one of its affiliated foreign offices to a U.S. office. This classification also enables a foreign company that does not have a U.S. office to send an executive or manager to the U.S. to establish such a location. The L-1A visa can be granted for a period ranging between three months and five years, with a maximum period of seven years from the date it was originally issued.

An L-1B visa allows a U.S. employer to transfer a professional employee with specialized knowledge concerning the organization’s interests from one of its affiliated foreign offices to one of its offices in the U.S. This type of visa also allows a foreign company that does not have an office in the U.S. to send an employee with specialized knowledge to the U.S. to help establish that location. The L-1B visa can be granted for a maximum of five years.

The L-1 process begins with the petitioner filing Form I-129, Petition for a Nonimmigrant Worker, along with the appropriate fees and documents. The petition must include evidence of the corporate relationship with the employer located abroad, as well as a statement describing the employment history of the visa applicant and his or her job duties and qualifications.

L-1 visa holders can bring their spouses and unmarried children under the age of 21 to the U.S. by using the L-2 status. These visa holders are subject to the same restrictions as the individual who sponsored them. Dependents may also enroll in school while in the U.S., but they need a work permit to serve as employment authorization for working in the United States.

Discuss Your Visa Options with a Boston Lawyer

At Maiona Ward, our attorneys are knowledgeable in applications for L-1A and L-1B as well as EB-1 visas and other aspects of immigration law that affect people coming to the Boston area. We are committed to carefully assessing the merits of each case and giving our clients an honest and realistic overview of their situation. We are here to answer your questions and address your concerns. To set up a meeting with one of our attorneys, call us at 617-695-2220 or contact us online. We represent clients in Cambridge, Waltham, and Providence, among other areas of Massachusetts and Rhode Island.

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