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Guide to TN Visas

TN visas are work visas granted to nonimmigrant North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) professionals from Mexico and Canada. The TN visa is used by Mexican and Canadian professionals who come to the U.S. to work for NAFTA.

Rebecca I. Pathak

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Call us today at 818-843-1185, so that we can answer your questions, provide initial consultation on your immigration matter, assess how we can help you or can point you in the right direction as you take on this important and life-changing pursuit.

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Who is Eligible for TN Visas?


To work in the U.S. as a NAFTA professional with TN status, you must meet the criteria below:

  • You must be a citizen of Canada or Mexico

  • Your profession must be included in the official NAFTA list

  • The position you wish to assume in the U.S. requires a NAFTA professional and is sought by an employer on a pre-arranged part-time or full-time basis. Self-employed professionals are not eligible.

You meet the qualifications and specific education and/or experience qualifications of the role

Mexican citizens must have TN visas to be admitted in the U.S. with TN status, however, Canadian citizens typically do not need a visa to work in the U.S. as a NAFTA professional.

If you are Canadian citizen, you can request to be issued a TN visa, but without a TN visa, you can apply for TN nonimmigrant status at a U.S. port of entry.

As a Canadian citizen, you will be required to possess a TN visa to work as a NAFTA professional in the U.S. if you reside in a third country with a non-Canadian spouse and/or children and you intend to enter the U.S. with your family.

What Must You Do to Obtain Your TN Visa?


The first form that you must correctly and completely fill out is Form DS-160, which includes a photo of you.


At the interview that you scheduled at the U.S. embassy or consulate, you will need to present the following:

  • A valid passport for travel to the U.S. that is valid for at least six months beyond your intended period of employment in the U.S.

  • Your Nonimmigrant Visa Application Form DS-160 confirmation page

  • Application fee payment receipt in the case that you are required to pay before your interview or fee payment at the interview

  • A contract or letter of employment in the U.S. from your employer that confirms your planned employment in one of the NAFTA professions. The letter should include a description of your role, including business activities and position duties, your purpose for entry, your anticipated work period in the U.S., your educational qualifications or applicable credentials, evidence that you comply with Department of Homeland Security regulations and/or state laws and your pay arrangements

  • Documentation – including degrees, diplomas, certificates, professional licenses, organization memberships etc. – that proves that you meet all minimum education and/or work experience requirements of the NAFTA profession

  • You may be asked to present additional materials

Can Your Spouse and Children Accompany You in the U.S. During Your Employment?

Yes. Your spouse and unmarried, minor children are also eligible to apply for TD visas so that they can enter with you into the U.S.

If you’re a Canadian citizen and your children and spouse are Canadian citizens, they do not need visas.

If your children or spouse wish to enter after you have already entered the U.S., they will need to show your valid Form I-94 to prove that you are maintaining TN visa status.

Where to Begin?


As you go through this emotional and demanding process, it can make a world of difference to have specialized help. At Pathak and Feldman Law, we’re here to provide caring, knowledgeable assistance from start to finish of your TN visa petition.


Call us at 818-843-1185 today to schedule a consultation!

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