L-1 Multinational Employees

Basic Summary

The L-1 Visa is used for multinational executives and managers of multinational entities. Multinational entities are those entities that have both an overseas and an American presence and have common ownership. Common ownership is generally defined as when an entity or a family of entities owning a majority of both the American and overseas companies.

L-1A Multinational Managers Executives must manage professional employees or produce at an executive level for one year abroad prior to filing their L-1A Visa application.

L-1B Visas are for employees with specialized knowledge. Specialized knowledge is generally defined as information and experience about a company’s products, services, research, techniques, or interests and their application to international markets.


Nationals of all countries may utilize the L-1 Visa. Canadians are often able to obtain a fast-track L-1 Visa.


There are no Visa Quotas for L-1 applications.

Spousal and Dependent Work Authorization

Once L-1 employees enter the United States, their spouses and dependent children can apply for work authorization, which is granted about 60-90 days after entry into the United States.


The L-1A and L-1B visas are ordinarily issued for three years at a time. L-1A employees cannot exceed an aggregate total of seven years. L-1B cannot exceed an aggregate total of five years.