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L1 Visa and the EB1C Green Card

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If you are in the US on an L1 visa then you must apply within 2 years of entry to qualify for an EB1C Green Card

The requirements for employment based immigration (permanent residence) under the EB1C immigrant scheme are similar to the requirements for the L1A Executive and Manager visa category. Many overseas executives and managers, including business owners, come under the L1A visa scheme first and then apply at a later date for EB1C "Green Card" as an international manager or executive, which is one of the best ways of gaining an employment based immigrant visa (green card).

The business needs to have been established in the US for at least one year before being able to come under this green card scheme.  A significant benefit of the EB1C visa category as a multinational manager or executive is that there is no Labor Certification requirement. Please note that those who have worked outside the US in a non-management role and only meet the requirements for the L1B specialized knowledge worker will most likely come under an employment based immigrant scheme, where Labor Certification is a requirement.

Most applications for an EB1C immigrant visa is after initial entry on an L1 visa. Usually an L1 intra-company transfer petition application is made to the USCIS service center to transfer someone to the US from the overseas operations. If the company is a very large company with L1 Blanket filing then the process is simpler and the application for the L1 visa can be made at the relevant US Embassy or Consulate.  L1 visa applicants are usually granted entry for up to three years for an existing office, or for a new office the L1 visa is granted for one year. 

If the employer then wishes to apply for a green card they need to meet the following requirements:

  • The employee must have worked in a management or executive level role outside the US for at least one year in the last three years.
  • The business must have been doing business in the US for at least one year.
  • The position in the US must be a management or executive level role.
  • There must continue to be a qualifying relationship between the US and overseas company meaning that there needs to be common ownership and control.


If you would like to apply for an L1 visa through, please fill out our application form.


Further information, help, and advice's team of specialists has over 25 years of experience in immigration services, and have helped thousands of people to study and work in the US. All applications for US visas are dealt with in-house by a US qualified lawyer who is typically also a member of the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA).

For more information and advice on US immigration law and US visa applications please contact us on 0344 991 9222 or at