L-1B Intracompany Transferee Specialized KnowledgeL-1B Visa – Intracompany Transferee Specialized KnowledgeL-1B Intracompany Transferee Specialized Knowledge

The L-1B visa program allows multinational companies to transfer professional employees with specialized knowledge relating to the organization’s interests from their foreign offices to their US offices.

Specialized knowledge means either special knowledge possessed by an individual of the petitioning organization’s product, service, research, equipment, techniques, management, or other interests and its application in international markets, or an advanced level of knowledge or expertise in the organization’s processes and procedures.

Eligibility Criteria:

The employee being transferred must possess specialized knowledge about the organization’s products, services, processes, systems, or proprietary techniques. This specialized knowledge must not be something readily available in the U.S. labor market but must be unique and advanced to the organization’s business.

There should be a qualifying relationship between the US organization and the foreign entity like a parent company, subsidiary, affiliate, or branch office.

The beneficiary must have been employed by the foreign entity for at least one continuous year within the last three years preceding the submission of the L-1B petition.

The L-1B employee must not be controlled or supervised by an unaffiliated employer.

The L-1B employee’s work must not be considered labor for hire by an unaffiliated employer.

L-1B employees will be allowed a maximum initial stay of three years. 

Blanket petition can be filed by some organizations if they meet the following:

  • The L-1B petitioner and related foreign organizations are engaged in commercial trade / services.
  • The L-1B petitioner has an office in the United States and has been doing business for one (1) year or more.
  • The L-1B petitioner has three or more domestic and foreign branches, subsidiaries, and affiliates; and
  • The L-1B petitioner along with the related foreign organizations, collectively, meet one of the following criteria:
  1. Must have obtained at least 10 L-1 approvals during the previous 12-month period.
  2. Must have U.S. subsidiaries or affiliates with combined annual sales of at least $25 million; or
  3. Must have a U.S. work force of at least 1,000 employees.

The L-1B visa is a non-immigrant visa, meant for temporary stays in the U.S. It can be initially granted for up to three years and can be extended up to a maximum of five years.

The visa benefit is for temporary employment in the US. It could be extended for a maximum of seven years for executives and managers. The L-1B visa allows for “dual intent,” meaning the visa holder can pursue lawful permanent resident status (green card) while on an L-1A visa status.

Period of Stay/Extension of Stay:

Initial Period of Stay: Up to three years

Extension of Stay: Extension of stay usually is granted in increments of up to an additional two years, until the employee has reached the maximum limit of five years.

Family of L-1B workers:

Spouses of L-1B and unmarried children under 21 years of age are eligible for L-2 visas and generally will be granted the same period of stay as the employee.

Spouses of L-1A visa holders may also be eligible to apply for work authorization.

To Top