Temporary Visas

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TN Canadian/Mexican Professionals

The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) contains provisions for the admission of 63 listed occupations for Canadian and Mexican professionals for up to three years, with extensions permitted.

Canadian professionals may submit a request for TN admission directly to the border inspector at the port of entry or airport, along with a letter from the U.S. employer describing the offered employment; the foreign national’s academic credentials; and, for some professionals, proof of work experience; and the appropriate fee. No prior petition is required to be approved by a USCIS service center. Upon admission, the foreign national is issued an I-94 form valid for up to one year. Mexican TNs use a procedure involving some aspects of the H-1B visa.

TN Professions List
  • Requirements
    • For Canadian and Mexican citizens only
    • For professional occupations on the NAFTA list
    • Job offer
    • Up to three year-year admission; extension is permitted
    • For Canadians, unlimited number of visas annually, unlike H-1Bs
    • While TN’s may not appear to be complex, they are treated very technically by the government and should be prepared by an expert

Steps for Obtaining TN Visas

  • Step 1

    Lawler & Lawler will send a questionnaire and list of needed documents to the employer and visa applicant. We will then analyze the job and applicant’s education and work experience to determine eligibility.

  • Step 2

    Supporting documents are gathered from applicant and company.

  • Step 3

    We work with the employer and foreign national to prepare the supporting letter and send it to the employer for review and signature.

  • Step 4

    TN package is sent to applicant. We review admission procedures with applicant.

  • Step 5

    Applicant presents TN visa package to the immigration inspector at the border or airport. If in the U.S., one can apply for change of status to TN at a USCIS Service Center. This can take from a few days (with a premium processing fee paid to the government) to three months. When positively decided, the applicant is given an I-94 form with an admission stamp. The I-94 is used for multiple admissions to the U.S. for up to one year. Extensions are permitted.