What is TN Status/ Visa?
The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) created special economic and trade relationships between the U.S., Canada & Mexico.The non-immigrant NAFTA professional (TN) visa allows citizens of Canada & Mexico, as NAFTA professionals, to work in the US in pre-arranged business activities for U.S. or foreign employers.
· A citizen of Canada or Mexico;
· Profession must be on the NAFTA list: https://travel.state.gov/content/visas/en/employment/nafta.html;
· The position in the US must require a NAFTA professional;
· Applicant will work in a pre-arranged full-time or part-time job for an employer. Self-employment is not allowed;
· Applicant must possess the qualifications, meeting the specific requirements, education and/or experience of the profession.
A Canadian citizen would need a TN visa if he / she resides in a 3rd country with a non-canadian spouse and/or children. If such a Canadian citizen plans to enter the US as a NAFTA professional, he/she must 1st procure a TN Visa so that the dependent spouse/children may apply for the derivative TD visa.
When can I apply for a TN Visa?
Unlike H-1B visas, there is no quota on the number of TN visas which may be issued every year, therefore it can be obtained any time of the year.
Canadian applicants may apply directly at a border post, and get their TN visa immediately. Mexicans would have to apply at a consular post, but they may renew at border posts.
Pros and Cons of TN?
An advantage of the TN visa is that it may be renewed indefinitely in 3 year increments.
one limitation of TN is that it is not a “dual intent” visa, Another disadvantage is that your dependents, which would be in the US on TD status, are unable to obtain work authorization.
Why do you need to hire an Attorney:
Applying for TN visa / status requires preparing different documents for different positions and involves complex processes. An experienced Immigration attorney could help you complete appropriately to maximize your chances of getting the TN visa / status. Missing documents, deadlines and inappropriate process will get your TN application denied.