How Long Does L1 Visa Processing Take?

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If you are considering applying for an L1 visa, you may be wondering how long the process will take. The L1 visa is a non-immigrant visa that allows multinational companies to transfer employees from their foreign offices to their offices in the United States. This visa is a popular option for companies looking to expand their operations in the US, and for employees looking to work in the US temporarily.

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In this article, we will discuss the L1 visa processing time and what applicants need to know before applying.

What is the L1 Visa?

Before we dive into the processing time, let’s first understand what the L1 visa is and who is eligible to apply for it.

The L1 visa is a non-immigrant visa that allows multinational companies to transfer employees from their foreign offices to their offices in the United States. This visa is available to employees who have worked for the company for at least one year in the past three years and have specialized knowledge or are in a managerial or executive position.

There are two types of L1 visas: L1A for managers and executives, and L1B for employees with specialized knowledge. Both visas are valid for up to three years and can be extended for a maximum of seven years for L1A and five years for L1B.

L1 Visa Processing Time

The L1 visa processing time can vary depending on several factors, such as the workload of the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) and the complexity of the case. On average, the processing time for an L1 visa is between 3 to 5 months.

However, it is important to note that the processing time can be longer if the USCIS requests additional evidence or if there are any errors or omissions in the application. It is crucial to ensure that all the required documents are submitted correctly to avoid any delays in the processing time.

Factors Affecting L1 Visa Processing Time

Several factors can affect the processing time of an L1 visa. These include:

USCIS Workload

The USCIS receives a high volume of visa applications, which can affect the processing time. During peak seasons, such as the H-1B visa filing season, the USCIS may experience a higher workload, resulting in longer processing times for other visa categories.

Complexity of the Case

The complexity of the case can also affect the processing time. If the USCIS requires additional evidence or if there are any errors or omissions in the application, it can significantly delay the processing time.

Premium Processing

Applicants can opt for premium processing, which guarantees a 15-day processing time for an additional fee. 

L1 Visa Requirements

To apply for an L1 visa, applicants must meet certain requirements. These include:

  • The applicant must have worked for the company for at least one year in the past three years.
  • The applicant must be in a managerial or executive position or have specialized knowledge.
  • The applicant must be transferred to a US office of the same company.
  • The US office must have a qualifying relationship with the foreign company.
  • The US office must have the capacity to pay the employee’s salary.

L1 Visa Green Card Processing Time

One of the benefits of the L1 visa is that it can lead to a green card. However, the L1 visa green card processing time can vary depending on several factors, such as the applicant’s country of origin and the type of green card being applied for.

On average, the L1 visa green card processing time can take anywhere from 6 months to several years. It is important to note that the L1 visa does not automatically lead to a green card, and the applicant must still meet the eligibility requirements for a green card.

Tips for a Smooth L1 Visa Application Process

To ensure a smooth L1 visa application process, here are some tips to keep in mind:

Start Early

It is important to start the application process as early as possible to allow for any potential delays. This will also give you enough time to gather all the required documents and ensure that they are submitted correctly.

Seek Professional Help

The L1 visa application process can be complex, and it is always recommended to seek professional help from an immigration lawyer or an experienced immigration consultant. They can guide you through the process and ensure that all the required documents are submitted correctly.

Double Check Your Application

Before submitting your application, make sure to double-check all the information and documents to avoid any delays or rejections. It is also recommended to have someone else review your application to catch any errors or omissions.

Conclusion

The L1 visa is a popular option for multinational companies looking to transfer employees to their US offices. The processing time for an L1 visa can vary, but on average, it takes between 3 to 5 months. Factors such as the USCIS workload and the complexity of the case can affect the processing time.

To ensure a smooth application process, it is important to start early, seek professional help, and double-check your application before submitting it. With the right preparation and guidance, you can increase your chances of a successful L1 visa application.

HOW WE HELP CLIENTS

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