A U.S. employer must first offer a job to a Canadian before sponsoring that citizen to work in the USA. A Canadian cannot apply for a work visa on their own without such an offer of employment or unless their U.S. employer supports them.
A valid work visa or work permit is also required to be legally employed in the USA. There are many kinds of visas, each with its own educational or work experience standards.
Visas that allow Canadian citizens to work in the USA
Work visas for Canadians are divided into several categories.
H-1B visas are popular for Canadians seeking work in America. H-1B visas are for Canadian citizens employed for temporary work in specialty occupations that require education, training, or experience relevant to the position applied for. Specialty occupations include professions like accountants, doctors, engineers, and architects.
Applicants must hold a U.S. bachelor’s or higher degree related to the specialty occupation from a recognized university or college. Canadians often apply for the H1B visa if they do not qualify for the TN visa.
The TN visa was originally created by the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement or USMCA ( then the North American Free Trade Agreement or NAFTA) to facilitate temporary employment for qualified Canadians. The TN visa provides the easiest way for Canadian professionals to work in the US. Canadians only need to show a valid job offer from the USA. The TN visa does not require sponsorship by a U.S. employer
The applicant must meet the U.S. job’s educational and experience qualifications to be eligible for TN nonimmigrant status. The position applied for must be on the NAFTA job list.
L-1 Visa – Intra-company Transferee
The L-1 non-immigrant visa category lets a U.S. employer transfer a Canadian employee into their office in the United States through company sponsorship. It also enables a Canadian company which does not yet have a U.S. branch office to transfer one of their employees to the United States to establish that office.
To qualify for the L-1 visa, the transferee must also have been working continuously for a qualifying company for a year before allowed admission to the U.S. They should also have worked in an executive or managerial position in the same employer’s company.
The O-1 non-immigrant visa category applies to applicants possessing extraordinary ability in the arts, education, athletics, sciences, or business. For U.S. visa purposes, “extraordinary ability” means an individual’s ability and skills have been commended nationally or internationally.
The O-1 visa requires an employer’s sponsorship. An applicant with a criminal record will be prevented from entering the United States or acquiring U.S. immigration status.
Are you sponsoring a Canadian citizen to work in the USA?
All visas require a significant amount of investment of time and money. To protect that investment, hire an immigration law expert who’ll set you on the right direction and help you avoid unforeseen obstructions.
The U.S. immigration team of Richards and Jurusik focuses their practice on U.S. sponsorships for Canadians. Give us a call or send us an email if you need to sponsor a Canadian citizen to work in the USA. Let us handle everything from filing the initial petition to managing fees. You’ll be free from stress and have more time to focus on your work knowing that you’re in competent hands.
Call Richards and Jurusik today at (866) 697-1832 to speak with a qualified U.S. Immigration lawyer who will assist you with employment sponsorship processing. Or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.