US Visa Options for Canadians

US Immigration Solutions for Canadians    Expert Legal Services for Canadians Navigating U.S. Immigration    L1 Visa for Canadians    E2 Visa for Canadians    EB5 Visa for Canadians    TN Visa for Canadians    

Canada and the United States have a long-standing relationship, with many Canadians traveling to the US for work, school, or leisure. However, for those looking to stay in the US for an extended period of time, it is important to understand the different visa options available. In this article, we will discuss the three main US visa options for Canadians: L1 Visa, E2 Visa, and EB5.

    L1 Visa

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    The L1 Visa is a non-immigrant visa that allows Canadian citizens to work in the US for a US-based company that has a parent, subsidiary, affiliate, or branch office in Canada. This visa is typically used for intra-company transfers, where an employee is transferred from a Canadian office to a US office. The L1 Visa is valid for up to three years and can be extended for a maximum of seven years.

    Eligibility

    To be eligible for an L1 Visa, the Canadian citizen must have worked for the Canadian company for at least one year in the past three years. They must also be coming to the US to work in a managerial, executive, or specialized knowledge capacity.

    Application Process

    The L1 Visa application process involves submitting a petition to the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) by the US company. The petition must include evidence of the relationship between the Canadian and US company, as well as the qualifications of the Canadian employee. Once the petition is approved, the Canadian employee can apply for the L1 Visa at a US consulate in Canada.

    E2 Visa

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    The E2 Visa is a non-immigrant visa that allows Canadian citizens to invest in and manage a US business. This visa is only available to citizens of countries that have a treaty of commerce and navigation with the US, which includes Canada. The E2 Visa is valid for up to five years and can be renewed indefinitely as long as the business remains operational.

    Eligibility

    To be eligible for an E2 Visa, the Canadian citizen must have invested a substantial amount of capital in a US business. The investment must be at risk and the Canadian citizen must have at least 50% ownership of the business. They must also be coming to the US to develop and direct the business.

    Application Process

    The E2 Visa application process involves submitting a petition to the USCIS by the Canadian citizen. The petition must include evidence of the investment and the qualifications of the Canadian citizen. Once the petition is approved, the Canadian citizen can apply for the E2 Visa at a US consulate in Canada.

    EB5 Visa

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    The EB5 Visa is an immigrant visa that allows Canadian citizens to obtain a green card by investing in a US business. This visa is only available to citizens of countries that have a treaty of commerce and navigation with the US, which includes Canada. The EB5 Visa is valid for two years and can be renewed by applying for a permanent green card.

    Eligibility

    To be eligible for an EB5 Visa, the Canadian citizen must invest at least $1.1 million in a US business, or $800,000 in a targeted employment area. The investment must create at least 10 full-time jobs for US workers. The Canadian citizen must also be actively involved in the management of the business.

    Other  types of US Visas are available for Canadians

    B-1/B-2 Visitor Visa

    The B-1/B-2 visitor visa is the most common type of visa for Canadians traveling to the US for tourism, business, or medical treatment. This visa allows Canadians to stay in the US for up to six months and can be obtained at the US border or through the Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA) for eligible travelers.

    F-1 Student Visa

    The F-1 student visa is for Canadians who wish to study in the US at an accredited educational institution. This visa allows students to stay in the US for the duration of their studies and also allows for limited employment opportunities. To obtain an F-1 visa, Canadians must first be accepted into a US educational institution and then apply for the visa at a US embassy or consulate.

    J-1 Exchange Visitor Visa

    The J-1 exchange visitor visa is for Canadians participating in an exchange program in the US, such as a work and travel program or a cultural exchange program. This visa allows for a temporary stay in the US and also allows for limited employment opportunities. Canadians must first be accepted into an exchange program and then apply for the J-1 visa at a US embassy or consulate.

    H-1B Specialty Occupation Visa

    The H-1B visa is for Canadians who have a job offer from a US employer in a specialty occupation, such as engineering, science, or computer programming. This visa allows for a temporary stay in the US and can be extended for up to six years. To obtain an H-1B visa, Canadians must first have a job offer from a US employer and then apply for the visa at a US embassy or consulate.

    TN Visa

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    The TN visa is a special visa available to Canadians under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). This visa allows for temporary work in the US in certain professional occupations, such as accountants, engineers, and scientists. To obtain a TN visa, Canadians must have a job offer from a US employer and provide proof of their qualifications for the specific profession.

    Conclusion

    There are various types of US visas available for Canadians, depending on the purpose of their travel. It is important for Canadians to research and understand the requirements for each visa before applying. Additionally, Canadians should always carry their travel documents, such as a valid passport and visa, when traveling to the US.

    Find an Immigration Lawyer in Canada

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