NAFTA Professionals (TN) visa

NAFTA Professionals (TN) Visa Under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) a citizen of a NAFTA country may work in a professional occupation in another NAFTA country provided that:

  • The profession is on the NAFTA list:
  • The alien possesses the specific criteria for that profession;
  • The prospective position requires someone in that professional capacity; and
  • The alien is going to work for a U.S. employer.
  • Aliens entering under this classification are considered non-immigrants.


    The requirements for Canadians and Mexicans wishing to enter under this classification are not the same.

    Canadian Citizens must provide the following at the port of entry:

  • A request for “TN” status;
  • A copy of the applicant’s college degree and employment records which establish qualification for the prospective job;
  • A letter from the alien’s prospective U.S.-based employer offering him or her a job in the United States, which is included on the professional
        job series (NAFTA list); and
  • The appropriate fee in U.S. Dollars.
  • Canadian citizens are not required to obtain a visa, but instead receive “TN” status with the Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services (BCIS) at the port of entry.  The “TN” status will only be granted if the period of stay is temporary.

    The requirements for Mexican citizens are much like those for obtaining an H-1B visa, and are as follows:

  • First, the prospective employer must file a labor condition application;
  • Then, the applicant's prospective employer must file an I-129 Petition with the Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services (BCIS); and
  • After the petition has been approved, the alien must apply for a non-immigrant visa at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate in Mexico.
  • Requirements for Extension of TN status:

    The requirements for Canadians and Mexicans wishing to renew their “TN” status are not the same.

    Applications for extension of stay are processed by the Bureau of Citizenship and Immigration Services (BCIS).

    Canadian citizens have two options.

  • They may have their employer file an I-129 form at the closest regional BCIS office.  This option does not require leaving the U.S.
  • Canadians may return to Canada to re-apply at the port of entry with the same documentation that is required for an original application.
  • Mexican citizens must have their employers renew their labor certification and file another I-129 with their regional BCIS office in order to extend their stay.


    The spouse and unmarried, minor children of the principal alien are entitled to the derivative status, but they are unable to accept employment in the United States.

    See: NAFTA Professional Job Series List

    There are multitudinous immigration laws, federal statutes and regulations involved in applications for non-immigrant and immigrant visas. The legal process is complex and could result in the denial of a your visa if the application is not properly prepared. If the application is put together correctly and professionally by a qualified immigration attorney, the probability of achieving a successful result is greatly increased.

    The Bócsi Law Firm can precisely and professionally prepare all of the necessary applications for you, providing you with security that the entire process goes smoothly, and relieving you of the stress and worry that often accompanies immigration legal procedures.

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