What is an L1 Visa?

The L1 is a temporary visa that enables companies operating both in the US and overseas to transfer an employee from its foreign operations to the USA for up to 7 or 5 years. The employee must have worked for a branch office of a US company abroad for at least one year during the last three years.

What are the requirements?
There are two types of employees who can obtain a L1 Visa.

1. Managers/Executives-L1A


  • If the individual is in a Managerial position abroad and will be a Manager here, they can get the L-1A. They must perform a supervisory duty to establish goals and policies that direct an organization’s functions. They must supervise professionals.
  • A person in this category is issued a L1-A visa for a three years period and is renewable twice for two years for total of seven years. The advantage of this visa is that a person can also qualify for a green card while employed during L1 status without the labor certificate.

2. Specialized knowledge Staff-L-1B

  • A person in this category must have in depth knowledge of a company’s processes and procedures such as products, services, research and management.That person should not simply be a skilled worker having skills necessary to do any jobs. They must possess technical knowledge of the company’s inner business, which cannot be possessed by a non employee.
  • A person in this category receives an L1-B visa which is approved for three years and can be extended once for 2 years for total of five years.


  • Note that is a person is coming to establish a new office in the US; they are initially given 1 year, which is then extended subsequently depending on the viability of the business.