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The L-1A Visa

Transfer an executive or manager to a U.S. office

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What is the L-1A Visa?

The L-1A enables managers and executives at foreign companies to transfer to a U.S. office, or establish a new U.S. office.

Faster Approvals with Premium Processing

Do you or an employee need to work in the U.S. right away? The government offers premium processing on L-1A visas, so they can be approved in 15 days or less.

No Degree Requirement

There are no degree requirements for the L-1A, so you don't need to worry about matching a job title to an employee's college degree.

No Annual Limits

Unlike the H-1B, there is no limit on the number of L-1A visas granted annually. Employers can petition for the L-1A at any time during the year as long as the employee has been with the company for at least one year.

Direct Path to Green Card

The L-1A visa is a dual intent visa. This means that your employee can apply for permanent residency with L-1A status.

Qualifying for the L-1A Visa

Employees that have worked in a "managerial" or "executive" capacity at your foreign entity for at least one year within the past three years usually qualify to come to the U.S. on the L-1A visa.

A VP of Sales would be considered an "executive" because they oversee the company's revenue.

A Director of Engineering who manages fifteen employees would be considered a manager.

A functional manager who does not manage people, but does manage essential company functions can also qualify for the L-1A as a manager.

Which L-1 category is right for you or your employer?


  • Transfer an executive or employee in a management position to the U.S. for up to 7 years. The initial period of stay for the L-1A is 3 years with the option for two extensions in two-year increments
  • The employee does not need to be a people manager. If the employee is a functional manager--overseeing budget or a decision-maker--they still qualify for the L-1A.
  • Dependents can join the employee on the L-1. The spouse can work in the U.S. with the EAD-L-2 visa.


  • Transfer a specialty worker such as a software engineer to the U.S. for up to 5 years. The initial period of stay for the L-1B is three years with the option for a two-year extension.
  • The L-1B is a good option for employees with specialized knowledge about products, research, and management as it applies to international markets.

Establishing a New U.S. Office with the L-1 Visa

The L-1 visa enables international companies to expand to the U.S. Send key employees to launch your new U..S. office.

About new office L-1s

Working with Legalpad

We simplify the L-1 work visa process so you know exactly what to expect every step of the way.

Step 1


We hop on a short call to make sure you or your employee qualifies for the L-1.

Step 2


We hop on a call to get details about your company.

Step 3


Review evidence for the L-1 petition with your immigration team.

Step 4


We share all letters with you and others to sign.

Step 5


Have your employer sign the final version of your L-1 application.

“Wow – we did it! It was a pleasure working with you and your team, you guys never gave up and we did it. We are looking forward to working with Legalpad to bring more of our team to the USA. This is a life changing event!”

Nick Jordanovski, Upshift

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