Understanding H1B, L-1, and TN Visas and How They Work in Los Angeles


The United States offers several nonimmigrant work visas that allow workers to visit locations like Los Angeles to excel in their chosen careers. The three most common are the H1B visa, the L1 visa, and the TN visa. Because each of these visas has similarities to the others, it means that understanding the differences and deciding which is the right option can be challenging. This article will delve into what each of these visas is all about to give individuals the chance to choose the one right for their needs.

H1B Visa Law in Los Angeles, California

The United States H1B visa allows companies in the states to employ workers in specialty occupations chosen from graduate-level workers. The covered occupations require technical or theoretical expertise in specialized fields like IT, medicine, finance, science, accounting, mathematics, architecture, and engineering. If a professional job requires a bachelor’s degree or higher, it typically qualifies under the H1B for specialty occupations.

In some cases, a person without a bachelor’s degree may still be eligible by showing the equivalent of a degree using work experience or other types of qualifications. However, there is a visa cap, which means that very few people get a successful H1B visa in Los Angeles. The employer needs to petition for a visa in the United States, and it will have a six-year duration.

Most of the time, evidence of a degree is required to petition for this visa. This could be through objective resources that show overlap between the degree and positions in the industry, an explanation of how responsibilities in the business relate to a degree and knowledge, or expert opinions and testimonials that show the value of a specific degree for the job or field. An H1B visa lawyer in Los Angeles can help immigrants gather the evidence needed to move forward.

All About the L1 Visa in Los Angeles

Sometimes called the intra-company transferee visa, the L1 visa is a category that has been designed to allow multinational companies the chance to transfer employees from foreign locations to areas within the United States. However, only employees in an executive or managerial position or individuals with specialized knowledge about the company’s operations are capable of receiving an L1 visa through a visa lawyer in Los Angeles.

The process of applying for an L1 visa is similar to that of the H1B in that evidence may be required before obtaining a visa. However, an L1 visa has no specific education or degree requirements. Receiving this visa also does not require an individual to have specialized knowledge as they would need with the H1B. Instead, the L1 visa is only available for workers who have been employed for at least a year by a multinational company.

Another difference is that the maximum length of time that a person with an L1 visa can stay in the United States is seven years, while H1B holders can stay for six years and also file for a three-year extension. 

Important Information about TN Visa Law in Los Angeles

The final visa for nonimmigrants is the TN visa. This visa also has its own requirements compared to the L1 or H1B visa. It was created as a way of allowing Mexican and Canadian citizens to come temporarily into the United States for professional business activities. This visa was created through the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) as a part of a trade and economic relationship between Canada, Mexico, and the United States.

Citizens from Canada will need to apply for the TN-1 visa to work in the United States, while those from Mexico will need a TN-2 visa for the same purpose. Qualifying for this visa requires being a citizen of Mexico or Canada, having an offer of employment, and having an intention to work in an approved profession. The individual who wants the visa should also have the proper credentials for the profession, which might be a bachelor’s degree, licensing, or a master’s degree.

Citizens from Canada can apply for a TN visa at the United States border port of entry. The person will need to bring several documents with them, including a letter from the employer, proof of Canadian citizenship, any credentials evaluations, and fees for the visa. Mexican citizens and Canadian citizens can also submit a TN visa application through a consulate in the home country or at any U.S. embassy.

How a Lawyer Can Help with Obtaining the Appropriate Visa

Individuals who wish to come temporarily into the United States for work will need to manage their time and paperwork well to meet deadlines and ensure everything is in order. An H1B visa lawyer in Los Angeles can help ensure that everything gets done right the first time to avoid delays. Having experienced attorneys available is the best way to reach the objective of working in the Los Angeles area.

There are many choices for an L1 visa lawyer in Los Angeles, but not all have the same level of knowledge and expertise. Word of mouth is one option for finding a firm that can meet the applicant’s needs, and if there are family members or friends who have worked with an immigration attorney in the past, that’s a bonus. 

Even after having referrals, it’s also essential to ask for references to get an idea of how the lawyer worked out for others. The right person will have positive online reviews and a list of satisfied clients happy to recommend their services. Once the right person is found, a lot of stress will go away. When working with a professional, there is someone there who knows every letter of the law and can help ensure the best chances of employment.

Final Thoughts About Nonimmigrant Visas

Whether one plans to stay in the United States for a short time or wishes to become a citizen eventually, the first step is having the right attorney. Find someone who can help in the long-term and start building a relationship with them. It’s well worth the time and money to choose the best, since getting the desired results will open up all sorts of opportunities in the future.