The USMCA (NAFTA) makes hiring Canadian citizens and Mexican citizens on TN Visas relatively simple when compared to the other US work visa options. Canadians and Mexicans are both able to obtain TN Visa status without the formal sponsorship associated with the processes of obtaining H-1B Visas and US Green Cards. A TN visa is not considered formal sponsorship, here are a few reasons why.
1. No pre-authorization from the US Department of Labor (DOL)
TN Visas do not require certification from the US DOL. And although a US employer must pay a TN Visa professional a competitive wage, there is no requirement to obtain a prevailing wage determination (PWD) through the DOL, or a test of the labor market. There is also no Labor Condition Application (LCA) process through the DOL.
2. Limited Employer Involvement
In most cases, a US employer only needs to provide a properly drafted support letter indicating their desire to hire the TN visa professional under a role listed on the USCMA TN Professions list.
3. The potential employee can apply for a TN Visa on their own
New TN Visas are most commonly obtained by a TN Visa professional that applies for admission on their own—at a US Port of Entry (POE) for Canadians, or through a US Consulate or Embassy for Mexicans. TN professionals are able to use proof of qualifications along with the support letter from their prospective employers to apply for and obtain their TN Visas. In most cases, they apply for admission on their own at a US Port of Entry (POE) or US consulate or embassy.
So while a TN Visa does require a job offer and written support from a US employer, this is not considered formal sponsorship.
Additional Outside Resources
- USDOL: Permanent Labor Certification
- USDOL: Prevailing Wage Information and Resources
- USDOL: Labor Condition Application (LCA) Specialty Occupations H-1B, H-1B1, and E-3 Programs
We Can Help!
Don’t know where to start? We are experienced in helping Canadian citizens obtain TN Visa status for filling either part-time or full-time positions within the US. If you have questions about whether your particular situation qualifies, contact Richards and Jurusik for a free assessment of your TN Visa matters. We have more than 20 years of experience helping people live and work in the US on TN Visas.