L-1A Visa Overview: Transfer of Executive or Manager

May 19, 2021
L1 Visa

What is the L-1A Visa?

L visas allow employers to transfer people between foreign branches of the company. The foreign national must have been employed with the organization outside of the United States for at least one continuous year in the preceding three years at a qualifying foreign entity.


The L-1A allows for the transfer of Executives or Managers


Who’s Eligible?

Foreign nationals who’ve worked abroad at a foreign affiliate of the sponsoring U.S. entity in an executive or managerial capacity can apply for this visa category.

Executive capacity refers to the employee’s ability to make major decisions without much oversight.

Managerial capacity refers to the ability of the employee to supervise and direct the work of employees and to manage the organization, or a department, subdivision, function, or another component of the organization.

Candidates must have worked at a related entity abroad for at least 12 continuous months out of the last three years at the time of application.

The work or service must be in an executive, managerial, or specialized knowledge capacity for a parent company, branch, subsidiary, or affiliate of the same employer.

There must be a qualifying relationship with a foreign company such as a parent company, branch, subsidiary, or affiliate.

If the executive’s or manager’s reason for travel is to open a new office in the United States, the following conditions must be met:

  • The employer has secured the physical office location
  • Executive, managerial or specialized knowledge capacity
  • The executive or manager has been employed in that position for one continuous year in the three years preceding the filing of the petition
  • The intended U.S. office will support an executive or managerial position within one year of the approved petition


Validity Period:

Employees working in the US on L-1A visa may stay for a maximum for 7 years

  • The maximum initial stay for employees entering the US to establish a new office is 1 year.
  • The maximum initial stay for all other employees is 3 years.
  • The maximum stay with extension is 7 years.

L-1 visa extensions are given 2 years at a time.

Government Fees:

Application Fees: $960

Premium processing: Employers can pay the $2,500 premium processing fee when available and USCIS will adjudicate the L-1A petition, meaning they are required to approve, issue a Request for Evidence (RFE) or deny the visa petition within 15 calendar days.



Employees may be accompanied by their spouses and unmarried children 21 years and under with an L-2 nonimmigrant dependent classification. Dependents are allowed to study. Spouses in L-2 status may apply for work authorization once they are in the United States.

If you’re looking to file L-1A Visa Applications or Extensions we can help! 

Learn more about how we can help you here

Interested? Let's get in touch!

Reach out now