Immigration to the U.S. for NAFTA Professionals

The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) created the TN Work Classification to facilitate the temporary employment approval of Canadian and Mexican citizens looking to work in the United States. This was intended to further strengthen both business and trade relations between the three countries. Upon approval of a TN, a Canadian or Mexican citizen can be admitted to the U.S. in increments of stay up to 3 years. There is the possibility that an extension or multiple extensions of stay(s) would be granted in increments of up to 3 years.

What are the Requirements for a TN?

First of all, the applicant for a TN must be a citizen of either Canada or Mexico. A TN-1 Visa is for Canadian professionals. A TN-2 is for Mexican professionals. The applicant must qualify under one of the listed NAFTA professions. Qualifying NAFTA professions that are on a list called the Annex 1603.d.1 and the list include:

  • Accountant
  • Biologist
  • Chemist
  • College Professor
  • Computer Systems Analyst
  • Dentist
  • Dietician
  • Engineer
  • Graphic Designer
  • Hotel Manager
  • Interior Designer
  • Lawyer
  • Management Consultant
  • Mathematician
  • Nutritionist
  • Occupational Therapist
  • Registered Nurse
  • Social Worker
  • Urban Planner
  • Veterinarian
  • Zoologist

The applicant must provide proof that the position located in the U.S. does in fact require a NAFTA professional. Furthermore, the applicant must provide evidence that he or she has the credentials and meets the educational requirements of the position. The job with the U.S. employer must be a prearranged part-time or full-time position. Self-employment is not valid for purposes of the TN.

In order to file for the TN, a $460 filing fee for the I-129 petition must be paid if you opt to petition by mail. If you apply at a border or port of entry into the U.S., you will have to pay a $50 application fee and a $6 fee for your I-94 arrival/departure card. Processing time at the border may take as little as a few hours. Petitioning by mail will require more time for processing that will largely depend on the caseload of the USCIS Service Center. It can oftentimes take as long as 6 months to process the I-129, Petition for Nonimmigrant Worker. 

You have the option to pay an additional fee for premium processing in order to expedite the petition processing time to 15 calendar days. Premium Processing only works to shorten the processing time. It will not increase the chances that your application will be approved. If for some reason the USCIS is unable to review your application in the shortened time period applicable to premium processing, the premium processing fee will be refunded and the application will be processed normally.

Immigration Attorneys for Canadians and Mexicans Coming to the U.S. for Work

A TN Visa is a great option for Canadian and Mexican professionals looking to come to the U.S. to work. The TN Visa does not have a yearly quota, which means there is no limit on the amount of qualified applicants who may receive this visa. Nachman, Phulwani, Zimovcak Law Group, P.C. will guide you through the TN Visa application process and answer any questions you may have along the way. Contact us today

If you should have any questions or need more information about the ways in which the U.S. Immigration and Nationality Laws may impact you, your family, your friends or your colleagues, please contact the U.S. Immigration and Nationality Lawyers at the NPZ Law Group – VISASERVE – U.S. Immigration and Nationality Lawyers