TN Visas for Mexican & Canadian Immigrants to US

Are you a Mexican or Canadian citizen who needs to enter the United States to conduct business?  If so, a TN Visa may be what you need.

If you want or need a TN Visa, you can contact Boston immigration attorney Giselle M. Rodriguez.  Giselle helps clients with the full range of immigration challenges. She is bilingual (English & Spanish), and works with clients throughout Greater Boston, Massachusetts, and beyond. Giselle is available for consultations 7 days a week (by appointment). Contact Giselle today to discuss your case and your application, or read on to learn more about TN visas.

What is a TN visa?

Also known as a Nonimmigrant NAFTA Professional Visa, a TV Visa is a fast-track visa that allows other North American (Canadian or Mexican) nationals a straightforward path to live and work in the United States.

A TN Visa is a non-immigrant visa. It will not open a direct path to a green card

Usually spouses and children under the age of 21 may join you with a TN-Dependent, also called a TD Visa. The TD visa will not allow your family members to work in the US.

Who is eligible for a TN visa?

Any Canadian or Mexican citizen with a NAFTA-category job offer in the United States may apply for a TN visa. You must be qualified for the NAFTA-category job you intend to fill.

You can find a copy of the NAFTA professional list here. Usually these professions require at least a BA, if not a Master’s degree or a Ph.D.  Yet they are not so specialized that they’re impossible to get. Graphic designers, hotel managers, and even certain types of insurance claims adjusters may all qualify. 

How long does it take to get a TN visa?

An expedited TN visa usually takes 15 days to process, but it can take more than 15 days. It is one of the fastest visas you can receive. 

If you decide not to pay for expedited processing, the regular application can take 2 to 4 months, depending on USCIS. 

How long does a TN visa last? 

A TN visa lasts 3 years, but may be renewed indefinitely if you stay employed by the same employer in a NAFTA position. To extend your visa, your employer must file a Form I-129 on your behalf. 

If you change employers, you must apply for a new TN Visa and may need to leave the country while you wait temporarily. 

Applying for a TN visa

If applying for a TN visa through consular processing, you must submit a DS-160 form and a packet of evidence to apply. You’ll also need to schedule an interview at your local US embassy. You’ll need to provide a photo, a contract or letter of employment, evidence of your compliance with DHS regulations and state laws, and documentation proving you meet the required education or work experience requirements. The requirements are a bit different if you are already in the U.S. under a different status and looking to change your status to that of a TN visa holder within the United States- A common example of this is when a F1-visa student wants to change their status to a TN visa. In that case, be careful with changing your status on time. 

Your employer must submit a Form I-129

As straightforward as these visas can be, it’s still wise to work with an immigration attorney before submitting the forms. Delays in the process could mean losing the job that makes you eligible in the first place. If you are an employer attempting to bring a NAFTA worker to Boston, you’ll also want the process to go as smoothly as possible so you can get your employee at their desk immediately.

If you need help with your TN Visa, you can contact my Boston office today to schedule a consultation.