L-1 Visas When Opening A New Office

  • By: Serving Immigrants
  • Published: March 13, 2020
L-1 Visas When Opening A New Office

If you are a foreign company looking to open a new office in the United States, then an L-1 visa can be a very useful tool. L-1 visas can help you bring over the necessary managers, executives, and employees with specialized knowledge that you need to successfully open a new office.

New Office Requirements

A new office means an organization that has been doing business in the United States through a parent, affiliate, branch, or subsidiary for less than one year. Requirements for opening a new office will depend on whether you are utilizing an L-1A visa or an L-1B visa. L-1 visas are initially available for one (1) year but can qualify for extensions. To open a new office, there is no requirement of minimum capital investment. An investment that is appropriate for the type of business is sufficient.

L-1A Visas For Managers And Executives

If the beneficiary of the L-1 visa is coming to establish the new office as a manager or executive, then the following evidence must be provided by the petitioner:

  • Proof that physical premises to house the new office have been secured
  • Proof that the individual has been employed as an executive or manager for one continuous year and that they will be acting in an executive or managerial capacity when establishing the new office
  • Proof that the new U.S. office will meet the “doing business” standard and will support an executive or managerial position within one year of an application’s approval.

An executive or manager who is opening a new office should be actively involved in the day-to-day operations of the business. In addition, they should have the authority to hire staff and make decisions.

L-1B Visas For Professionals With Specialized Knowledge

If the beneficiary of the L-1 visa is coming to the United States in a specialized knowledge capacity, then there are different requirements. The following evidence must be submitted:

  • Proof that the physical premises to house a new office has been secured
  • Proof that the entity in the United States will be a “qualifying organization”; and
  • Proof that the petitioner has sufficient funds to pay the L-1 visa holder and to conduct business in the United States

Contact An Experienced Visa Attorney

Handling the immigration issues involved in opening a new office in the U.S. can be complicated. You may want an experienced immigration attorney to help you through the process. At Serving Immigrants, Inc., we have the experience and the knowledge to help you put together a complete visa application. Contact us online or call us at (305) 907-6151 to schedule a strategy session.

Magdalena Cuprys, Esq.

As an immigrant and a refugee herself, attorney Magdalena Cuprys understands how
important, terrifying, and exciting immigrating to America can be. She understands
how important it is to have one’s legal status in order to achieve the American dream.

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