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Wish To Open A US Office Via An L1 For My Ltd Company - Has Anyone Here Done This?

Wish To Open A US Office Via An L1 For My Ltd Company - Has Anyone Here Done This?

Old Oct 6th 2011, 6:41 pm
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Default Wish To Open A US Office Via An L1 For My Ltd Company - Has Anyone Here Done This?

I am looking to potentially open a US based office for my UK based small Limited company.

The plan would be to retain the UK office and I would oversee it from the US, so I would look to enter the US on an L1A visa with my wife working with me on an L2.

I assume others here have done this with their own small businesses?

While I know America very well and have visited maybe 25+ times, perhaps totalling a couple of years being there, opening an office in the US would be new territory in every sense of the word!

I'd very much like to talk to those that have done it to gain some advice. Is there anyone who could possibly help answer some questions?

Thank you in advance.
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Old Oct 6th 2011, 6:50 pm
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Default Re: Wish To Open A US Office Via An L1 For My Ltd Company - Has Anyone Here Done This

An immigration lawyer. When I was in practice, I accomplished this quite a few times on behalf of clients.
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Old Oct 7th 2011, 12:33 pm
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Default Re: Wish To Open A US Office Via An L1 For My Ltd Company - Has Anyone Here Done This

Originally Posted by S Folinsky View Post
An immigration lawyer. When I was in practice, I accomplished this quite a few times on behalf of clients.
Thank you for your reply. Would it be possible to ask a few questions?
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Old Oct 7th 2011, 2:36 pm
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Default Re: Wish To Open A US Office Via An L1 For My Ltd Company - Has Anyone Here Done This

Originally Posted by AtomicUK View Post
Would it be possible to ask a few questions?
You're always free to ask questions. Whether Mr. F. will respond or not... well, hard to say. But hey... we'll answer you.

Ian
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Old Oct 7th 2011, 2:37 pm
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Default Re: Wish To Open A US Office Via An L1 For My Ltd Company - Has Anyone Here Done This

Originally Posted by ian-mstm View Post
You're always free to ask questions. Whether Mr. F. will respond or not... well, hard to say. But hey... we'll answer you.

Ian
also, the answers might be a little...erm, cryptic lol
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Old Oct 7th 2011, 2:51 pm
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Default Re: Wish To Open A US Office Via An L1 For My Ltd Company - Has Anyone Here Done This

Originally Posted by paulpur View Post
also, the answers might be a little...erm, cryptic lol
I am amused by the "cryptic" comment which is often repeated. Quite often I don't know the answer for a particular question without further factual digging and research. What I do try to do is to point a direction to pursue.
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Old Oct 7th 2011, 3:09 pm
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Default Re: Wish To Open A US Office Via An L1 For My Ltd Company - Has Anyone Here Done This

i think i say 'cryptic' due to the fact that alot of the time, as you say, you point in a direction rather than a definitive answer , but i also know that you usually keep your answers generalised , it helps you to maintain a 'not your lawyer' relationship and enables you to cover your own butt ,whilst still being able to help, which of course is quite understandable hehe
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Old Oct 7th 2011, 3:15 pm
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Default Re: Wish To Open A US Office Via An L1 For My Ltd Company - Has Anyone Here Done This

Originally Posted by paulpur View Post
i think i say 'cryptic' due to the fact that alot of the time, as you say, you point in a direction rather than a definitive answer , but i also know that you usually keep your answers generalised , it helps you to maintain a 'not your lawyer' relationship and enables you to cover your own butt ,whilst still being able to help, which of course is quite understandable hehe
I found your post rather confusing.
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Old Oct 7th 2011, 3:22 pm
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Default Re: Wish To Open A US Office Via An L1 For My Ltd Company - Has Anyone Here Done This

whats to be confused about?

i said that Mr F's posts can seem to appear a little cryptic sometimes, but i guess its due to him wanting to help people but not appear to be giving out law advice specific to someones case which could come back to haunt him in this ever increasing litigious society we live in.
i figure thats why he usually keeps his posts to generalised information that can hopefully help people to pursue an avenue of research for their particular problem

apologies if that was confusing when i said it before...it made sense in my head lol

Last edited by paulpur; Oct 7th 2011 at 3:27 pm.
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Old Oct 7th 2011, 3:29 pm
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Default Re: Wish To Open A US Office Via An L1 For My Ltd Company - Has Anyone Here Done This

Thanks for your offers of help, I very much appreciate them.

I am only a few days into looking into this, so do please forgive any naive questions.

Starting at the top:

I am the sole director of the company, which is just over three years old although I am looking to add a second director to help me oversee the company should my L1A go ahead.

Our staff numbers are small, generally 2-3.


1) Does the UK business have to have a minimum turn over to qualify for an application?

2) Does a making a loss in any year of trading, impact heavily on the application?

3) How many people need to be employed by the UK company, is there a minimum?

4) Am I correct that you just have to have to have the business in the UK to open the US office and keep the UK business running?

5) What other elements would you suggest about my UK business that are essential for a good application?

Thank you in advance.
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Old Oct 7th 2011, 4:28 pm
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Default Re: Wish To Open A US Office Via An L1 For My Ltd Company - Has Anyone Here Done This

As long as you have a legit business in the UK and meet the basic criteria it is relatively simple to get a L1A and open up a new office in the USA. You will be given a 1 year visa.

The hard part is the renewal after one year. In the application you will submit a business plan detailing how well your US business will do etc and come renewal time you need to be somewhat close to the plan to get the extension.

The dilemma is the more impressive you make the business plan the easier to get the initial 1 year visa however come renewal time you need to demonstrate how well you have done so be realistic.

Assuming you get the renewal you can apply for a green card immediately. Whilst the green card process is similar to the renewal process there are subtle differences.

You should hire a USA immigration attorney to do all of this and spend your time making the business work.

I did a L1A start up and from the date of the initial L1A to receiving a green card was 17 months.
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Old Oct 7th 2011, 6:45 pm
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Default Re: Wish To Open A US Office Via An L1 For My Ltd Company - Has Anyone Here Done This

Originally Posted by paulpur View Post
whats to be confused about?

i said that Mr F's posts can seem to appear a little cryptic sometimes, but i guess its due to him wanting to help people but not appear to be giving out law advice specific to someones case which could come back to haunt him in this ever increasing litigious society we live in.
i figure thats why he usually keeps his posts to generalised information that can hopefully help people to pursue an avenue of research for their particular problem

apologies if that was confusing when i said it before...it made sense in my head lol

I knew exactly what you were talking about. It may have been a little awkwardly put however.
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Old Oct 8th 2011, 5:28 am
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Default Re: Wish To Open A US Office Via An L1 For My Ltd Company - Has Anyone Here Done This

1) Does the UK business have to have a minimum turn over to qualify for an application?
No

2) Does a making a loss in any year of trading, impact heavily on the application?
It might.

3) How many people need to be employed by the UK company, is there a minimum?
There is no stated minimum

4) Am I correct that you just have to have to have the business in the UK to open the US office and keep the UK business running?
Yes

5) What other elements would you suggest about my UK business that are essential for a good application?
Somebody I have heard of.
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Old Oct 24th 2011, 11:34 pm
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Default Re: Wish To Open A US Office Via An L1 For My Ltd Company - Has Anyone Here Done This

I am just in the process of L1. Should have the result by this friday (15 express service).

Fingers crossed.

Please feel free to ask any questions I am based near Manchester.
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Old Oct 25th 2011, 3:49 pm
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Default Re: Wish To Open A US Office Via An L1 For My Ltd Company - Has Anyone Here Done This

Originally Posted by classic12 View Post
I am just in the process of L1. Should have the result by this friday (15 express service).

Fingers crossed.

Please feel free to ask any questions I am based near Manchester.
Fingers crossed you dont get an RFE. Seems that this is rather common for L1 using the expedited route.
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