Eligibility For The L-1 Visa And The One Year Abroad Requirement
- The employee must have been working in an "executive", "managerial", or "specialized knowledge", position abroad.
- The employee must be transferring to the U.S. to work in an "executive", "managerial", or "specialized knowledge", position.
- The employee must be qualified for the position.
- Within the three years prior to filing the petition, the employee in question must have worked a continuous year outside of the U.S. for the overseas company before the employee can be transferred to the related U.S. company. Any days that were spent in the U.S. during that year are added to the total time that the employee must have been working abroad.
- Part-time employment does cannot meet the one year abroad requirement unless the employee had been working for several foreign affiliates and the time adds up to full-time hours.
- For employees already working in the U.S. on an H-1B for the same employer that will sponsor the L-1 petition, the USCIS will look at the three years prior to U.S. admission for the one year abroad requirement.
- The current employer of the foreign national does not need to be related to the U.S. company sponsoring the L-1 petition as long as a continuous year was worked at a related company in the past three years.
- The L-1 beneficiary must have been employed as a direct employee of the foreign company, therefore making independent contractors ineligible.