The L-1 visa is for executives or employees with specialized skills of multinational companies who are being transferred from an office overseas to a US office. The visa may also be used by a manager or executive to open a new office in the US. The L-1 visa is initially valid for three years and can be extended to a total stay of five years. There is no prevailing wage requirement for the L-1 visa.
Although the L-1 visa was deigned for large multinational corporations, it may also be used by smaller companies.
A petitioner 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:
1. The petitioner and each of those entities are engaged in commercial trade or services;
2. The petitioner has an office in the United States that has been doing business for one year or more;
3. The petitioner has three or more domestic and foreign branches, subsidiaries, or affiliates; and
4. The petitioner and the other qualifying organizations have obtained approval of petitions for at least ten “L” managers, executives, or specialized knowledge professionals during the previous 12 months; or have US. subsidiaries or affiliates with combined annual sales of at least $25 million; or have a United States work force of at least 1,000 employees.
Spouses and children of the L-1 visa holder may obtain an L-2 visa to enter and remain in the US. L-2 Spouses may apply for a work permit. L2 spouses and children may attend school in the US.
Foreign nationals with specialized knowledge or managers being transferred to the US. to supervise work of other supervisory, professional or managerial employees, or who manages an essential function, department or subdivision
A foreign national who, within the preceding three (3) years has been employed abroad for (at least) one (1) continuous year by a qualifying organization may be admitted temporarily to the United States to be employed by a parent, branch, affiliate, or subsidiary of that employer in a managerial or executive capacity, or in a position requiring specialized knowledge.