The United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), formerly known as NAFTA, has made it less difficult for Canadians to obtain jobs legally inside the United States. The USMCA treaty occasionally allows foreign professionals to work in the U.S. for a limited amount of time. This classification for Canadian and Mexican citizens seeking to be professionally employed in the United States is called a TN visa.
TN Visa Job Description: Computer Systems Analyst
A TN visa oversees the exchange of foreign applicants under the USMCA. A number of professions fall under a TN visa. Many positions at leading U.S. companies require highly educated and skilled professionals, including doctors, engineers, scientists, and architects.
Computer systems analysts, sometimes called systems architects, are among professions entitled to file a TN visa application. Strict legal language defines each professional category. For example, in the eyes of the law, a TN computer systems analyst uses IT knowledge and skills to analyze how data processing can be applied to a company’s specific needs. The law states that these professionals help a company achieve its organizational objectives by designing and implementing computer-based processing systems. They may also train and supervise the company’s computer programmers.
Computer systems analyst educational requirements for the TN Visa
If you are a Canadian computer systems analyst seeking to work and live within the United States, you must qualify for the TN Visa by possessing one of the following academic credentials:
- Baccalaureate or Licenciatura degree coming from an accredited post-secondary institution of higher learning.
- Post-secondary diploma or post-secondary certificate with at least three years of work experience in the Information Technology field (in place of a Baccalaureate or Licenciatura degree).
- A post-secondary diploma is a credential given out by a recognized post-secondary institution of higher education, such as a college or a university.
- A post-secondary certificate is a credential given out by a federal or government-affiliated educational institution originating from Canada or Mexico.
- A minimum of three years of IT related work experience is required.
Application process for a TN computer systems analyst
A Canadian or Mexican computer systems analyst can apply for a TN visa by meeting the following requirements and conditions:
- Proof of Canadian or Mexican citizenship
- The prospective U.S employer’s offer of employment, with endorsement of the applicant for that particular position
- Documentation declaring the applicant’s intention to accept the position only as a short-term employee
- Documentation confirming the applicant’s intention to return to Canada or Mexico once their TN employment is finished.
When the foreign applicant presents the required documents above, they may then submit their application at the nearest U.S. Port of Entry for evaluation if they are from Canada. Mexican citizens can submit their application at a U.S. Consulate. Canadian and Mexican citizens can also apply by mail through the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services.
Issues commonly encountered by computer systems analyst
Computer systems analysts who apply for a TN Visa may encounter problems if their U.S. job involves programming. The U.S. Customs and Border Inspector’s Field Manual states that the computer systems analyst category does not include programmers. The computer programmer is unqualified for the TN computer systems analyst category. While it is understood that a computer systems analyst needs some degree of computer programming skills, the TN Visa category is not expanded to include a computer programmer.
The job of a computer systems analyst should not be confused with that of a computer programmer. As mentioned previously, the US Department of Labor has specific job descriptions for both positions, even though it accepts that the title of programmer analyst may be used for both computer systems analysts and computer programmers.
Matching the job title to its corresponding job description can avert confusion and a denial which may follow. If programmer analyst is your job by title, ask that your job description be reevaluated and changed to computer systems analyst. If your job description is actually that of a computer systems analyst, but your job title remains as a programmer analyst, your prospective employer may decide not to mention your job title in their endorsement letter.
Applying for a TN Visa?
As seen, you may have problems with your computer systems analyst TN visa if your job title or job description does not conform to the professional USMCA classification. If you have questions about a TN Visa application, contact the legal team of Richards and Jurusik to consult with an attorney.
Our team has over eight years of hands-on experience in the practice of the Immigration and Nationality Laws of the United States. This has given the firm exceptional skills with the planning and successful processing of TN USMCA Visas for Canadian applicants.
Call 716-970-4007 and speak to a TN Visa lawyer today.