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L1 Visas

L1 Visas (L-1A and L-1B) are meant for temporary intracompany transferees. L-1 visas allow companies to temporarily transfer workers to the U.S. When SimVisa prepares your L-1 visa, our L1 visa lawyers will:

  • Verify the U.S. company has a qualifying relationship
  • Complete L visa petitions
  • Convert L visas to immigrant visas

Contact us to discuss your situation.

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All You Need to Know

Trusted Chicago L1 Visa Lawyers

Many industries require specialized knowledge. When a parent company needs to transfer specialized workers to a U.S. company's main office, the worker will usually start with an L1 visa.

SimVisa by Atom Law Group has extensive experience filing visa petitions for multinational companies. We help employers and workers located in Chicago and across the nation obtain the visas they need to work in the U.S.

Do your workers need L-1 visas to work in the U.S.? Contact us to speak to an L1 visa attorney.

What Is an L-1 Visa and What Is a Qualifying Relationship?

L-1 visas allow workers for a foreign company to enter the U.S. for an intracompany transfer. An intracompany transfer happens when the worker enters the U.S. to work for the same employer or a related U.S. company. A U.S. office has a qualifying relationship with the foreign company if it serves as a:

  • Branch
  • Affiliate
  • Subsidiary
  • Parent

A worker cannot apply for an L visa alone. The employer must file the application form and pay the USCIS filing fee on the worker's behalf.

What Is the Difference Between the L-1A and L-1B Visa?

The U.S. issues two types of L visas:

L-1A for an Executive or Managerial Position

An L-1A visa allows someone who is an executive or manager to enter the U.S. to serve as an executive or manager in the U.S. office.

L-1B for Workers with Specialized Knowledge

An L-1B visa allows a worker to enter the U.S. to provide the U.S. office with specialized knowledge about the company's:

  • Products
  • Services
  • Equipment
  • Research
  • Management
  • Techniques
  • Other interests

Note that workers do not need to have advanced degrees. They need only advanced knowledge of processes and procedures.

Benefits of L1 Visa for You and Your Foreign Company

L1 visas provide many benefits, including:

  • Lower training and recruitment costs since you can transfer experienced and trained workers from the parent company
  • Institutional knowledge when opening a U.S. branch because you can transfer people in an executive or managerial capacity to open the newly established office
  • Fast processing times and no quotas because these visas are considered temporary
  • L-1 visa holders can bring spouses and dependent children by applying for an L-2 visa
  • Spouses on an L-2 visa receive work authorization in the U.S.

One of the biggest benefits to workers who want to stay in the U.S. is that the L-1A visa category is eligible to convert to an EB1C visa. The L-1A visa is considered temporary because it cannot lead to a Green Card. But the EB1C visa does have a path to permanent residency for employees interested in remaining in the U.S.

L-1 Visa Requirements

The requirements depend on the type of L-1 visa you need.

To apply for an L-1A visa, you must:

  • Have worked for a qualifying organization abroad for one full year within the past three years before applying
  • Plan to act in an executive or managerial capacity for the same employer or a company with a qualifying relationship

To apply for an L-1B visa, you must:

  • Have been working for a qualifying organization abroad for at least one year within the three years immediately preceding the application
  • Seek to provide services in a specialized knowledge capacity to the same employer or its qualifying organizations

The goal of an immigration lawyer is to document clearly that the applicant meets these requirements so the L-1 visa gets granted without any delays.

L-1 Visa Process for the Parent Company

Since the L-1 visa is temporary, USCIS makes the application process relatively straightforward. The company starts the application process by filing Form I-129 with USCIS. This form will include supporting documentation to prove the company and worker meet the eligibility requirements for the L-1 visa.

The next step will depend on whether the worker is inside or outside the U.S. Workers already in the U.S. will apply for a change of status. Workers outside the U.S. will apply for visa processing at a U.S. consulate or embassy.

The USCIS will conduct an interview to verify the applicant's work history and role with the U.S. affiliate or subsidiary. This interview could include questions like:

  • What is your job?
  • How long have you worked for this company?
  • Do you have employees who report to you?
  • What will your responsibilities be with the U.S. branch, subsidiary, or affiliate?
  • What kind of authority do you have in the company?
  • What specialized knowledge do you have?
  • Why do you need to travel to the U.S. to do your job?

After you pass the interview, USCIS will issue your L-1 visa.

What Is an L-1 Blanket Petition?

A blanket petition is available for employers who have previously obtained at least ten L-1 visas in the past twelve months. The company's U.S. entities must have at least $25 million in annual sales and they must employ at least 1,000 people in the U.S.

When a company meets all these requirements, its workers can apply for an L-1 visa at the U.S. embassy abroad instead of filing an application with USCIS. The worker must still satisfy all the qualifications to get the visa.

What Is the Duration of L-1A and L-1B Visas?

All L-1 visas begin with a term of three years. L-1A visas can be renewed for up to seven years and L-1B visas can be renewed for up to five years. If you run out of time on your L-1 visa, you must leave the U.S. for a full year. When you reapply, you will receive a new term of up to seven years for an L-1A or five years for an L-1B.

How Can Our Lawyers Help with L-1 Visas?

An immigration lawyer from SimVisa by Atom Law Group can guide both employers and employees through the L-1 process. We assist employers by analyzing their business relationships to ensure they have a qualifying organization in the U.S. We then advise them about their options for bringing valued employees to the U.S.

For workers, we prepare the paperwork to apply for the L-1 visa. We help them prepare for their interview with USCIS. And we help workers file L-2 applications so their families can travel with them.

Talk to a Simvisa L1 Visa Attorney Today

Do you have questions about the L1 visa process? Schedule a consultation with our L1 visa lawyers today.

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Why Choose a SimVisa L1 Visa Lawyer?

Every immigration lawyer with SimVisa by Atom Law Group has extensive experience dealing with all types of visa applications. When you apply for an L-1 visa to work for a U.S. affiliate or open a new office in the U.S., you receive:

  • An immigration lawyer with a 99.9% success rate in the visa petitions filed
  • Experience working with both employer and employee to get favorable outcomes
  • Over 15 years of working within the U.S. immigration system for clients

Contact SimVisa to discuss your company's situation with an experienced immigration lawyer.

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What Our Clients Are Saying

Before launching automated SimVisa services, we've been successfully helping people with immigration as a traditional immigration law firm - Atom Law Group. Read the reviews below to see what our clients have to say.

Natalia Diaz-Velazquez

Very happy with their services, SohYoon is the best Chicago immigration attorney

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Irena Trajkovski

We have been working with Atom Law Group since the inception of the US enterprise all the way through the immigration process wrap up. They have demonstrated to be a real center of expertise for all business and immigration related matters. Always response, supportive and true subject matter experts, Atom Law Group is the right choice for all business and immigration related questions. We highly recommend working with Atom Law Group.

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Brian Murray

I've been working with the Atom Law group since 2011 dealing with various visas throughout the years until I finally became a citizen and have only praise for the firm. From start to finish the process was as smooth as one could hope for with zero issues in the entire process. SohYonn was excellent in communicating with me every step of the way, and I was 100% confident that everything would work out which it did! Highly recommended.

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Lydia Hadusek

They were great! Helped me with my green card process. Any questions or concerns I had they would answer them promptly and would always put me at ease. The process with them felt more like a friendship.

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Pedro Kialanda

I do not know where i would be without Atom Law. They have helped me with my Green Card, Citizenship, and my mother's Green Card. Vanessa and SohYoohn were always available and ready to answer questions, alleviate any concerns we had. They always followed up and made sure everything was perfect. I can at least say from my side that everything was easy because they did all the heavy lifting. They are such a great team and i would recommend them to anyone who is going through the same process i went through. Thank you for everything

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FAQs About L-1 Visas

Our clients have a lot of questions. Here are the answers to some of those most frequently asked.

L1A visa to EB1C visa: How can L1 holders get a green card?

Yes, an L-1A visa holder can convert their visa to an EB1C visa. The EB1C visa provides a pathway to getting a Green Card. The EB1C visa is available only to executives and managers and the same employment requirements apply.

What is dual intent?

Dual intent refers to the visa holder's intent. To hold an L-1, the worker presumably has the intent to leave the U.S. since L-1s are temporary. But an L-1 visa holder can also apply for an EB1C visa, manifesting the intent to remain in the U.S. permanently.

Is there a premium processing option for L Visa petitions?

Yes, USCIS has a premium processing option where you receive a response to your application within 15 days. This does not mean your application will be granted or denied in 15 days. USCIS can also request additional information from you. You can find more information on the USCIS website.

Can I take my family to the United States on an L1?

An L-1 is only for the employees of a foreign entity. But your spouse and dependent children can apply for an L-2 visa to accompany you to the U.S. One of the main benefits of an L-2 is that your spouse can work while your family is inside the U.S.

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Contact Your L1 Visa Lawyers Today!

SimVisa helps a business bring qualified and experienced workers to a new market in the U.S. We provide service to companies so they can quickly get L visas. Contact us to discuss your situation.