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L1-A visa with a local contract?

L1-A visa with a local contract?

Old Mar 17th 2017, 8:29 pm
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Default L1-A visa with a local contract?

I am an expat in Germany, moving to the US with a L1-A visa. I am negotiating the terms of my contract, and the company states in a side letter that this will be a local contract. Can I have a local contract with a L1 Visa?

They will sponsor my green card, but until and IF I have the green card, shouldn't I have an expat contract?

Hope someone can shed some light in the topic.
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Old Mar 17th 2017, 8:55 pm
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Default Re: L1-A visa with a local contract?

Originally Posted by tbueno View Post
I am an expat in Germany, moving to the US with a L1-A visa. I am negotiating the terms of my contract, and the company states in a side letter that this will be a local contract. Can I have a local contract with a L1 Visa?

They will sponsor my green card, but until and IF I have the green card, shouldn't I have an expat contract?

Hope someone can shed some light in the topic.
They probably mean a local (to the United States) employment contract. Same happened to me. I was effectively let go of my UK based employment contract, and had to sign a new one when I got to the United States.

Although the 2 entities are the same company, my UK employment contract was not worth anything here.
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Old Mar 17th 2017, 8:56 pm
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Default Re: L1-A visa with a local contract?

Most US companies don't have contracts, as most are 'at will' companies i.e they can let you go OR you can go with relatively little notice.

You usually get an employment letter which sets out job descriptions, salary, hours etc etc and any specials specific to you.

I moved on an L-1A and only had the employment letter with some extras regarding repatriation, relocation expenses etc.

An expat contract is a very different beast - usually includes things like not paying US SS or Medicare costs and continuing to pay UK taxes etc because the person is expected to return home at some stage.
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Old Mar 17th 2017, 10:07 pm
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Default Re: L1-A visa with a local contract?

Originally Posted by tbueno View Post
I am an expat in Germany, moving to the US with a L1-A visa. I am negotiating the terms of my contract, and the company states in a side letter that this will be a local contract. Can I have a local contract with a L1 Visa?
Standard stuff, I had the same for my move. Your immigration status and employment contract don't necessarily have much to do with each other. You can negotiate things like repatriation in case of termination to the contract, but that's between you and your employer on an L1. H1-B has repatriation requirements I think, but L1 doesn't.

L1 can be a bad deal if you were to lose your employment - it can't be transferred to another company, and you basically have a few days to pack up and leave (or adjust status). I'd recommend staying on top of any promises to get permanent residency application going.
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Old Mar 18th 2017, 10:10 am
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Default Re: L1-A visa with a local contract?

Thanks for the help. I had the doubt since I did not want to be there with the wrong type of contract allowed by the L visa, and risk having a void visa. So now, I understand one thing is not linked to another.

I was not aware L1 cannot be transferred to another company, which worries me a bit since the company will be changing owners in the end of the year - after that everything is very uncertain.

Let's hope the green card process runs smooth and fast.
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Old Mar 19th 2017, 1:55 pm
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Default Re: L1-A visa with a local contract?

Originally Posted by tbueno View Post
.... I was not aware L1 cannot be transferred to another company, which worries me a bit since the company will be changing owners in the end of the year - after that everything is very uncertain. ....
The L-1A/B visa is for you to transfer from an affiliated company (under common ownership) to work temporarily (max 5-7 years) in the US, therefore if the company you transferred from is sold, or closes, then the premise of the L-1 visa is voided, so that is a huge concern, because if the business changes hands before your greencard application is submitted, the sale of the company will immediately void your L-1A, you will have to stop working, and you will be obligated to leave the US within a short time.
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Old Mar 19th 2017, 10:11 pm
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Default Re: L1-A visa with a local contract?

Originally Posted by tbueno View Post
Thanks for the help. I had the doubt since I did not want to be there with the wrong type of contract allowed by the L visa, and risk having a void visa. So now, I understand one thing is not linked to another.

I was not aware L1 cannot be transferred to another company, which worries me a bit since the company will be changing owners in the end of the year - after that everything is very uncertain.

Let's hope the green card process runs smooth and fast.
Getting a green subjects you to worldwide US tax even after leaving the US. If you hold it long-term it raises the possibility of an exit tax.
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