The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) allows citizens of Canada and Mexico to work in the United States on a temporary basis in prearranged business activities at NAFTA professionals. There is no limit on the number of TN visas granted each year.
The TN visa category requires that the applicant:
- Is a citizen of Canada or Mexico.
- Enters the U.S. on a temporary basis.
- Possesses the minimum qualifications of one of the professions specified in Appendix 1603.D.1 of the NAFTA treaty.
- The Appendix also stipulates the minimum qualifications for entry into the U.S. in each occupation.
- The most common minimum requirement is a Baccalaureate degree and licensure, if required for the profession. A foreign national must have licensure before he or she can obtain TN status.
- If credentials were obtained in a country other than the U.S., Canada or Mexico, USCIS may request an equivalency evaluation from a reliable credential evaluation service.
- Permanent residents of Canada and Mexico are not elligible to apply.
Period of Stay/Extension of Stay
- The initial period of stay is up to 3 years.
- If TN visa holder would like to extend the initial period of stay without first departing the U.S., ISSS may file Form I-129 on the visa holder's behalf.
- Alternatively, visa holders may depart the United States before status expires, and then, once abroad, apply at a CBP-designated U.S. port of entry or at a designated pre-clearance/pre-flight inspection station. The same application and documentation procedures required at the time of your initial application will be required.
Dependents of TN Nonimmigrants
Any accompanying or “following to join” spouse and children under the age of 21 may be eligible for TD nonimmigrant status.
- Spouses and children are not permitted to work in the United States, but they are permitted to study.
- Spouses and children are granted TD status for no longer than the period of time granted to the principal TN nonimmigrant.