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How much experience did you have before getting a L Visa?

How much experience did you have before getting a L Visa?

Old Jan 12th 2019, 6:03 am
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Default How much experience did you have before getting a L Visa?

Hi all, new here.

With an L Visa, how much experience did you have in your field before your employer allowed you to transfer to the U.S branch? Were you offered to transfer by your employer or was it something you enquired about?

A bit about me - recently graduated and hold a Business and Management degree. My plan is to work in corporate banking and build experience over the next 5+ years and then see if I can apply for an L Visa. Earning the right to live and work in the U.S is something I've wanted to do for as long as I can remember and reading the threads here from other users has me hopeful that with continued hard work and determination, I will be able to accomplish this.

I'm under the impression that a H1B Visa requires far more experience with all examples I've come across citing seniority with 5-7+ years in the role, even then, assuming there are no USC's who fit the job criteria so I believe the L1 Visa is my best bet?

Apologise for the questions and thank you for taking the time to read. Looking forward to discussing with you all!

James
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Old Jan 12th 2019, 12:56 pm
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Default Re: How much experience did you have before getting a L Visa?

You basically have a single route in front of you: get hired in the UK and get to VP level in London/Europe. Best way is to experience different employers and learn their methods of doing business. After 5 years choose the field you want to specialize in, banking is a big world and you have things like Retail, Investment, Commercial, fintech. Then you have to experience the size of the banking operations: some are big "we do pretty much everything", others are more like "we are a boutique and kick ass in our little field". After all that you may be around VP level, about 10 years I would say. Less if you manage to get on the right train right at the start.

At this stage of your career go and get experience under your belt, This is the most significative investment you can put in place. Do not give yourself a deadline (it will make you miserable) and don't worry about when and how it will happen. Work hard, play harder.
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Old Jan 12th 2019, 3:14 pm
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Default Re: How much experience did you have before getting a L Visa?

I joined Adobe in Edinburgh in 1998.
Two years later, albeit reluctantly, I was living in California.

I admire your determination.
The grass is always greener.
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Old Jan 12th 2019, 5:35 pm
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Default Re: How much experience did you have before getting a L Visa?

Another possibility is go to grad school
for MBA in US and marry an American.
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Old Jan 12th 2019, 5:37 pm
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Default Re: How much experience did you have before getting a L Visa?

I transferred to the USA in 1980, so quite a while ago, and things may have changed.

My company applied for an L1 visa, and handled all the interface with lawyers, etc. Based on that experience, you need to get yourself into a position where your company *wants* you to move, and is therefore motivated to go to the trouble and expense of getting the visa. Working for a US company in their UK office would be a good start.

At the time, I was in my mid 30s, and had worked for that company for 8 years, including a spell in Australia, helping to set up a new group there.
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Old Jan 12th 2019, 7:17 pm
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Default Re: How much experience did you have before getting a L Visa?

I worked for my company for 3 years before making the case to them about a move to the USA, which I completed a year later. I was at Director level (Head of type level in UK parlance) and went down the L1A route, but you have the L1B as well. I probably started considering a future move in around 2010 and moved sideways with a pay cut into the company I now work for in 2012 because it had that potential route for me, if I wanted to take it and if I was worthy of asking! I reached a situation in 2015 where I was ready for something new and the traditional move would have been outside the company for anther role. I spoke to the VP in the UK about my situation, offering up the move to the USA as something that I would be very interested in and the business would get the benefit of retaining my services. Took a few months of negotiations to get a role that expanded my remit and enabled the move to make sense - had to get a few USA based staff to buy into the idea.

If it was something that I had considered earlier on in my career, I believe I could have made it happen earlier as well. As it was, the timing worked well for my family and my wife had known about a hankering to move well before the situation presented itself. If you want it, and you have the skills to make it possible, it's very obtainable, just be prepared to put the legwork into your career to make it possible.
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Old Jan 12th 2019, 9:31 pm
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Default Re: How much experience did you have before getting a L Visa?

For me about 5 years... was working in Yemen for the briefest spell when they decided to have a little dust up between North and South from what I recall. How do you feel about Louisiana was the next question a few weeks later after relocating back to Chester... We went on L1 to Lafayette fully intending to return to the UK, still over here 25 years later... as others have said, depends how 'desperate' the need is to fill a position and if you just happen to be the one with the right skills, available at the right time
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Old Jan 13th 2019, 7:51 pm
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Default Re: How much experience did you have before getting a L Visa?

Joined a US company in 2000, worked for 7 years in the UK, then self-transferred internally on an L1B-Blanket.
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Old Jan 14th 2019, 11:45 am
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Default Re: How much experience did you have before getting a L Visa?

Originally Posted by James2142 View Post
My plan is to work in corporate banking and build experience over the next 5+ years and then see if I can apply for an L Visa. Earning the right to live and work in the U.S is something I've wanted to do for as long as I can remember and reading the threads here from other users has me hopeful that with continued hard work and determination, I will be able to accomplish this.
Highlighting something here - you will never be able to apply for an L visa, this is something your employer does.

Your plan is valid, I am in a scientific field and I had 20+ years post-graduate experience when my company offered me a role in the US. Others in my company have moved 3 - 5 years after graduation. For me, it was not planned, just a boss in the US deciding I would be a good fit for a vacancy in our US office.

I was not a manager but a technical expert, so went on an L-1B. It helped that I worked for a large multi-national company that moved people internationally all the time, so had policies and procedures in place. They moved enough people to the USA that they also had a blanket petition (I-797) which made my L-1B application very smooth. So pick your employer with care.
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Old Jan 14th 2019, 3:33 pm
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Default Re: How much experience did you have before getting a L Visa?

I'm in IT, so admittedly it seems to be a little easier to get employers willing to make the leap in this field, but I had 18 months interning (as a full time employee) and 6 months post graduation with my employer on a leadership program before they offered me a "trial" run in the US, on an L1. (Albeit considered very temporary) which they made a permanent thing.

My suggestion would be to look at graduate programs/leadership programs, I work for a major US based conglomerate and we regularly transfer our previous & current leadership program members worldwide, including to and from the US (which is the most common)
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Old Jan 14th 2019, 7:03 pm
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Default Re: How much experience did you have before getting a L Visa?

Four years working for a US company in the UK before they offered me a position in the US via an L1. But I wasn't actively looking to transfer during that time and I do recall several others who transferred after less time.
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Old Jan 16th 2019, 10:00 am
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Default Re: How much experience did you have before getting a L Visa?

I asked for a relocation after 4 years and got the L1b visa via a blanket petition. You don't need to wait 5 years but (at least for a L1B visa Intra Company transfer - Specialized Knowledge Worker) you will need minimum 18 months tenure in the proposed US role with a subsidiary outside of the US. You must be able to demonstrate you possess specialty knowledge as it relates to the role that needs to be transferred to the US. You need to demonstrate experience with the company proprietary technology, methodologies, processes, procedures.

Having a related degree helps but not strictly necessary if you can demonstrate you have enough experience in your job.
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Old Jan 16th 2019, 9:52 pm
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Default Re: How much experience did you have before getting a L Visa?

Originally Posted by James2142 View Post
Hi all, new here.

With an L Visa, how much experience did you have in your field before your employer allowed you to transfer to the U.S branch? Were you offered to transfer by your employer or was it something you enquired about?

A bit about me - recently graduated and hold a Business and Management degree. My plan is to work in corporate banking and build experience over the next 5+ years and then see if I can apply for an L Visa. Earning the right to live and work in the U.S is something I've wanted to do for as long as I can remember and reading the threads here from other users has me hopeful that with continued hard work and determination, I will be able to accomplish this.

I'm under the impression that a H1B Visa requires far more experience with all examples I've come across citing seniority with 5-7+ years in the role, even then, assuming there are no USC's who fit the job criteria so I believe the L1 Visa is my best bet?

Apologise for the questions and thank you for taking the time to read. Looking forward to discussing with you all!

James
FYI, H-1Bs don't require far more experience. Some people get it right after undergrad/grad school.
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Old Jan 17th 2019, 3:55 am
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Default Re: How much experience did you have before getting a L Visa?

Originally Posted by radiotakeshi View Post
I asked for a relocation after 4 years and got the L1b visa via a blanket petition. You don't need to wait 5 years but (at least for a L1B visa Intra Company transfer - Specialized Knowledge Worker) you will need minimum 18 months tenure in the proposed US role with a subsidiary outside of the US. You must be able to demonstrate you possess specialty knowledge as it relates to the role that needs to be transferred to the US. You need to demonstrate experience with the company proprietary technology, methodologies, processes, procedures.

Having a related degree helps but not strictly necessary if you can demonstrate you have enough experience in your job.
Not strictly true; you must have worked for a foreign subsidiary (or parent, actually) of the petitioning company for a minimum of 1 continuous year in the past 3 (there can however be breaks) and the role does not have to be the same, but it must require specialist knowledge (for a -B)
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Old Jan 20th 2019, 2:36 am
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Default Re: How much experience did you have before getting a L Visa?

Hi all,

Thanks for all the quick replies, been great reading all of your experiences and I appreciate all of the responses.

I have a few questions based on the responses (apologies if they've been asked before!)

1) Some being H1-B's after grad school - I do know of one person personally who has been in that position although that was for Aeronautical engineering and he was in the right place at the right time. I'm under the impression 'speciality' degree's/majors that are more sought after tend to be in a more favourable position than say the Business degree/major that I hold, is this correct?

2) Some users have said their employee's offered the chance to transfer to them without being approached though a handful have said they did query with their employer. Based on this, is it wrong to assume that the former is more likely provided I have built up enough experience and skill in job role?

3) For those that did approach their employer, what was the process like?

Thank you again for the responses. I will look into doing some additional courses, particularly leadership and finance to help improve my resume/CV. Currently in the process of applying for a few internships as a number of banks are offering corporate banking graduate schemes, which they say can lead into a career, though these don't open for application until July. I understand it's very early days to be asking about the future but I always like to plan ahead and learn from others.

Thanks again everyone.
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