If you are a business owner who wants to work with talented employees from Canada and Mexico, you might want to consult with an immigration lawyer about this process and the visas available for that purpose. Read on to learn more about how North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) professional workers from Canada and Mexico can be employed by your company through the right visa process and how the immigration law team at The Lozano Law Firm, PLLC can help you.
NAFTA created special economic and trade relationships for the United States (U.S.), Canada, and Mexico. These provide exceptions and specific processes from the usual visa arrangements required to enter the U.S. as a noncitizen. Suppose the employee is coming to the U.S. as part of prearranged business activities. In that case, NAFTA workers from both Canada and Mexico can enter the U.S. for that purpose on what is known as a TN visa which provides for temporary professionals.
TN NAFTA Professional Status Basics
The TN nonimmigrant classification permits qualified Canadian and Mexican citizens to seek temporary entry into the U.S. to engage in business activities at a professional level. This visa status is also referred to as a TN NAFTA Professional. There are certain conditions the employee in question must meet to qualify:
- They must be a citizen of either Mexico or Canada
- The position in the U.S. requires someone classified as a NAFTA professional
- The job in question is on the approved NAFTA list
- The work is either a part-time or full-time position
- The applicant has basic requirements for the job such as education or experience
When the TN visa process is an option because a worker from Canada or Mexico already has a formal job offer, this is one of the fastest ways to get a visa and therefore is preferred. You are encouraged to work with an experienced immigration lawyer to complete all of the necessary paperwork in a timely fashion. When an immigration official reviews a Canadian citizen’s application for a TN visa, it is sometimes possible to get immediate approval, provided that you have submitted all the proper evidence and paperwork.
Evidence for a TN Visa
As an immigration lawyer can tell you, you will need some evidence to show that a Canadian or Mexican worker qualifies for the TN visa under NAFTA. It includes a temporary offer of employment from you as an employer, letters of reference from current or previous employers confirming their experience level in the field, and copies of any relevant certificates or degrees.
Mexican citizens have a slightly longer process to get a TN visa and will need to apply directly at the U.S. embassy or consulate. Also, those rules are not applied equally at all U.S. embassies or consulate locations, so make sure the applicant understands the requirements indicated on the website first before they visit. Hence, they have a clear understanding of what is required of them.
Mexican applicants for the TN visa need to complete an online application, set up an interview and prepare for it, bring the required documentation, and attend the visa interview before an approval can be obtained. Interviews are usually required for those applicants between the ages of 14 and 79.
Medical professionals, scientists, and an array of professional service providers such as land surveyors, accountants, conservationists, industrial designers are some of the eligible occupations per the terms of the TN visa.
When you are bringing over a worker with these qualifications and helping them with this process, you might suggest hiring a lawyer for immigration as one way to make this easier. Likewise, if you’re the person applying for the visa, it’s in your best interest to identify that you fully qualify before starting the paperwork. In both of these situations, you should schedule a meeting with a lawyer for immigration with your paperwork and questions so that you’re clear on the requirements.
If you’re not sure whether or not your education or the job in question meets NAFTA requirements, other visa options might be available to you. You’ll want to discuss your situation with the help of a qualified lawyer so that you know your options as soon as possible before moving forward.
Questions About NAFTA? Contact The Lozano Law Firm, PLLC
At The Lozano Law Firm, PLLC, we work hard to help families and corporations through the immigration maze™. Our office has extensive experience assisting NAFTA applicants for visas from Mexico and Canada to get answers to their questions and to assist them with the process of gathering and submitting information. We’re here for you if you’d like help with the NAFTA TN visa application process or any of the questions that might come up as the application is in review.
Alfredo Lozano, a board-certified immigration attorney in good standing licensed to practice U.S. immigration law, can help you navigate the confusing paperwork with expertise, dedication, and an individual approach. Fill out our contact form or call us at 210-932-3600 to get started.
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