Go Back  British Expats > Living & Moving Abroad > USA
Reload this Page >

L1-A Questions

L1-A Questions

Old Dec 26th 2002, 7:06 am
  #1  
Just Joined
Thread Starter
 
Joined: Dec 2002
Posts: 5
manofmystery is an unknown quantity at this point
Default L1-A Questions

Hi

I am transfering from my UK company to our newly formed branch office in the USA and have the following questions:

1. My petition has been approved by the INS and I have applied for my visa in London. My question is applying for the visa stamp just a formality or can they reject my application?

2. I believe that after the branch office has been trading for 12 months I can convert my visa to a green card as an L1-A worker is classed as a priority worker and you avoid having to get dept. of labour approval. Is this conversion to a green card a sure thing or can they reject my application?

3. If I get a green card what are the advantages and disadvantages?

4. If I get a green card do I have to remain in the US? I would ideally like to spend a lot of time in the UK (family & business etc.) but do own a house in the USA.

Any advice given would be greatly appreciated.
manofmystery is offline  
Old Dec 26th 2002, 2:16 pm
  #2  
Maltesers, Flake, Mars
 
kazzuk's Avatar
 
Joined: Dec 2002
Location: Yorkshire to Sarasota
Posts: 251
kazzuk is an unknown quantity at this point
Default Re: L1-A Questions

Hi

The issue of the visa stamp in London is not a formality. They sometimes do their own checking. Providing your application is authentic there should be no problems. After 1 year you have to apply for your extension, for this you have to satisfy the INS that you are doing what you said you were going to do in the US. Once the extension is granted you are able to apply for adjustment of status. Once you have had your green card for 5 years you can apply for citizenship. Once you have this you can come & go as you please.
kazzuk is offline  
Old Dec 27th 2002, 5:39 pm
  #3  
Ben
BE Enthusiast
 
Joined: Oct 2002
Location: Connecticut
Posts: 920
Ben has a reputation beyond reputeBen has a reputation beyond reputeBen has a reputation beyond reputeBen has a reputation beyond reputeBen has a reputation beyond reputeBen has a reputation beyond reputeBen has a reputation beyond reputeBen has a reputation beyond reputeBen has a reputation beyond reputeBen has a reputation beyond reputeBen has a reputation beyond repute
Default

To answer your questions.

1 - in a way it is just a formality, as long as you didn't lie/mislead on your application anywhere.

2 - no it isn't a sure thing. My husband is on an L1A and they rejected his first attempt at by-passing the department of labour checks. Apparently, this will be happening more and more because of 9/11. We are fine now. It was approved on the second run. We had to provide more info. to prove that he is doing what his company says he is doing and he is in charge of enough people/specialised enough to warrant the L1A change over to greencard status.

3. The advantages of a greencard is it is the next step towards citizenship, if that is what you want. You can stay in the US without having to apply for visas and you can change your job without having to go through all the paperwork. I can't think of any disadvantages.

4. There are some restrictions to greencard travelling/time out of country, but I don't know what they are. All I do know is if you are out of the US for too long, you lose your greencard status and have to start all over again.

If you are wanting to travel freely, your best bet would definitely be to apply for citizenship as soon as you can (which would probably be after being here for approx. 7 years or more)

Someone else will probably be able to confirm some things for you like I think you can apply for your greencard after being here for 6 months on an L1A. the general waiting time for a greencard on an L1A is 18months to 2years, depending on where abouts in the country you are. some offices work quicker than others.

Good luck
Ben is offline  
Old Dec 27th 2002, 9:05 pm
  #4  
Forum Regular
 
Joined: Dec 2002
Posts: 55
NorthSouth is an unknown quantity at this point
Default

You can apply for citizenship after holding your permanent residency (green card) for 5 years.

If you are a permanent resident the INS restricts the amount of time you can spend out of the US each at one time. In my experience from Boston INS they say you cannot be out of the US for more than 4 months at any one time without their advance permission.
If you leave the country for longer than this they reserve the right to cancel your residency status (since it is deemed you have residency elsewhere if you are able to leave for such a length of time). In this circumstance you would have to go through the application process again.

"Disadvatages" of permanent residency is not really applicable if your comparing its merits to that of an L-1A. If anything it is more advantageous than a Visa since it enables you to work for any employer rather than the one who sponsored you - or your back to the UK.
Your permanent residency (as in the case of a Visa) can be revoked if you commit a crime which the INS consider serious enough for deportation - drug related (incl possession), assault etc.

You are jumping the gun a bit here, come over to the US, see if you like it and then discuss permanent residency with your employer since they will be sponsoring you. It can be a long and difficult process.
NorthSouth is offline  
Old Dec 28th 2002, 7:41 am
  #5  
Just Joined
Thread Starter
 
Joined: Dec 2002
Posts: 5
manofmystery is an unknown quantity at this point
Default Re: L1-A Questions

Thanks for your help. My application is legitimate and I have answered the questions on the visa application to the best of my knowledge. To give everyone a little more background in the hope that it will help my company have opened an office in the US and formed a subsiduary corporation with a $1,000,000 investment. I am the majority shareholder in the parent company in the UK and I decided to open an office in the US as I spend a lot of time in the US on vacation anyway (4-5mths a year) and the size of the US market has always appealed to me. I have owned a home there (FL) for a few years as I have always liked spending the winter months there.

I will be travelling between the US and the UK extensively as I am the lead executive in both companies. The UK parent has annual revenue of around $100,000,000 and will obviously require some of my time.

I guess what I am looking for is are there any "gotchas" that I need to avoid?

Again, thanks for all your help.
manofmystery is offline  
Old Dec 28th 2002, 1:17 pm
  #6  
Ben
BE Enthusiast
 
Joined: Oct 2002
Location: Connecticut
Posts: 920
Ben has a reputation beyond reputeBen has a reputation beyond reputeBen has a reputation beyond reputeBen has a reputation beyond reputeBen has a reputation beyond reputeBen has a reputation beyond reputeBen has a reputation beyond reputeBen has a reputation beyond reputeBen has a reputation beyond reputeBen has a reputation beyond reputeBen has a reputation beyond repute
Default

From what you have just said, manofmystery, I don't think you will have any problems. Money talks over here. My husbands boss, who is also a major share holder and opened an office in the US 4 years ago, has been able to come and go, but he doesn't stay for long periods of time and therefore doesn't need a long term visa for here. He doesn't want to move here.

If I was you, I would still consider getting greencard and citizenship sorted. You will have much more freedom to come and go at your leisure if you do.

If money is no object, shop around for a lawyer who is good at doing these things quickly. Things are different after 9/11 so I don't know how easy it will be, but I know europeans who have got a greencard in 6 months because they paid a high price for it. The only problem I saw with this was they had to pay the money up front and it was a gamble. thankfully the lawyer was legitimate, but they had no guarantees.
Ben is offline  

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service - Do Not Sell My Personal Information -

Copyright © 2018 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.