Are you a Mexican or Canadian citizen looking to legally live and work in the U.S.?
In this immigration world, there’s a toolbox of possibilities and options for everyone. You just need to get creative in figuring out solutions that you’d qualify for.
One of the visas available to Canadian and Mexican citizens is called a TN visa.
What is a TN Visa?
TN stands for Treaty National. This refers to the North American Free Trade Alliance (NAFTA) Treaty between Canada, the United States, and Mexico that Bill Clinton signed into being back in the 90s.
The Basis of the TN Visa
- Non-immigrant intent
TN candidates must show their intent to return to their home country after the temporary job is completed. If you’re planning on getting a green card, you should probably consider getting an H-1B, which is a dual intent visa.
To qualify for this, you need to have an employer who will sponsor you. If you are the founder of a company and you don’t have a boss or if you want to otherwise be self-employed, getting this type of visa is not the appropriate action. In the case of a management consultant, however, it’s possible to have a consulting contract with a client in the United States.
Benefits of a TN Visa
- It’s relatively fast.
If you’re Canadian, you can just apply at the airport. If you’re in Mexico, you definitely will need a visa interview.
- Visa validity
The status can be available for up to three years initially, and then it can be extended in unlimited increments of up to three years each as well. It is possible to extend the status within the United States without departing the country.
- Job specification
It is applicable to some jobs that would not otherwise qualify for an H-1B. Some of the professions that qualify for a TN visa include accountants, architects, computer systems analysts, economists, engineers, graphic designers, hotel managers, attorneys, research assistants in educational institutions, mathematicians, scientific technicians and technologists, technical publications, and writers.
For more information and resources on the different visa options for Canadian and Mexican citizens, check out Immigration Law for Tech Startups podcast. If you’d like to listen, head over to 020: TN Visas and Status for Canadian and Mexican Citizens.