Multiple L1 Visas

Posted on November 14, 2007 by Warren Wen | Category: Immigration

How Many L Visa Applications Can Be Filed for Newly Incorporated Company in the U.S.?

Mr. Kim asked:

I am a small business owner and the business I own is involved in exporting traditional Korean handicrafts like china, bamboo wares, etc.  Currently, I have established long term business relationships with some companies in the US, but I do not have my branch offices set up there yet.  With the growth of my business and other family needs, I am looking forward to setting up a branch in the US to expand the market there.  Since I have no friends or relatives in the US, I may have to go to the US myself to handle the company incorporation and other preparations first.  Later, I plan to send some of our key employees from the company in Korea to the US to help operate the business.  My question is: How many employees can my company sponsor for their visa application to transfer to the branch office in the US when I incorporate a new business in the US?  Can my wife apply for an L-visa as well?


Generally speaking, US immigration law places no restriction on the number of L visas a US business can apply.  Depending on its business needs and financial capabilities, a US company can apply for as many L visas as its business demands.  For example, many large multinationals are qualified for filing L-1 blanket applications, which allow them to file multiple L-1 visa applications at one time while the requirement upon documents is significantly reduced.  Nevertheless, that is applicable for established US companies only.  According to our years of experience, we don’t recommend a newly established US branch to file several L-1 visa applications initially, unless it is financially very stable.  In general, for a newly established US branch of a small or mid-sized business, it takes some time for the business to get on track and it is going to be difficult for the company to prove its financial capability to sponsor L-visa applications for many people.  Therefore, it may be better for Mr. Kim to consider filing one or two L-visa applications initially as his branch in the US would be newly established at the time of filing.  Once the business is in operation and growing and financially more stable, Mr. Kim could apply for more L-visas for his managers or other key employees to come to the US to help his business.

Regarding the question about filing for an L-1 visa for Mr. Kim’s wife, his wife could come to the US with an L-2 visa as a dependent family member, as long as Mr. Kim was successful in obtaining his L-visa.  She would not need to apply for a separate L-visa.

This article is only for your reference. Please do not apply mechanically to any exact cases. You are welcome to consult our attorneys at Liu & Associates, P.C. For contact information, please click here.