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What are the “New Office Rules”?


. The United States has large numbers of incentives to encourage foreign businesses to come to and open new offices in the United States. The SBA is a good source of information on US Government financial assistance available for new businesses.

US immigration also assists to foreign businesses starting-up a new business or office in the United States. This is assistance comes in form of the New Office Rules.

The New Office Rules are applied in L inter-company transfer visa cases where the US “affiliate”, “branch” or “subsidiary” to which an L Visa employee is to be transferred has been “doing business” in the United States less than one year .

“Doing business” means that your us business is operationally active and regularly and actively providing goods and/or services in the United States. Mere presence of a single employee in the United States does not constitute “doing business”.


. There are circumstances where USCIS may subject an older business to the “New Office Rules”. This is especially the case where the US entity has not: (a) been actively doing business; (b) maintained business premises over the course of the previous year; or (c) while properly formed the US business has not been actively operational.

Expert Guidance

. Ultimately whether or not your business is likely to be subject to the “New Office Guidelines” is a question requiring specialist advise from an experienced immigration lawyer familiar with Indian L visa cases.

What are the Implications of the “New Office Rules” for Indian L-1 Visa Applicants?

If your application is deemed as subject to the “New Office Rules” then:

  • Increased Scrutiny

    . A business subject to the “New Offices Rules” is also likely to be subjected to increased scrutiny as to the legitimacy of the US business.

  • Extra Documentation

    . You will need to provide USCIS with certain detailed additional documentation. Our L1 Visa Immigration lawyers are experienced in what documentation needs to be produced and how it should be presented.

  • Business Plan

    . USCIS has informed the American Immigration Lawyer’s Association that a business plan that shows how your business meets the requirements of the law is critical in these cases. More information on business plans is available by clicking here.

  • Visa Validity Period

    . You are likely to be granted a visa valid for a period of only one year after which time you will need to clearly demonstrate that your business has grown to the point where issuance of a longer-term L visa is truly justified.

What Additional Documentation do I Need to Satisfy the “New Office Rules”?

New Office L Visa Rules for US business

While there are specific documents that will need to be produced it is important that you create an overall impression of a real, operating, business. Our L1 visa lawyers are familiar with the documentation typically used to evidence this and are happy to answer your specific questions.

What is the Single Most Important Element of a New Office L Visa Application?

The business plan, including schedules of all employment to be created in the first year, is the most critical part of an L visa application.

Is it Possible for a New Business to Avoid Application of the “New Office Rules”?

Davies & Associates have identified certain circumstances where a new US business can avoid application of the “New Office Rules”. Potential L visa applicants can contact our firm for further details.

New Office Rules & The Business Plan

Guidance from the US government is unequivocal that an immigration business plan is completely indispensable in New Office Rules cases. The business plan in these cases needs to clearly explain how you will fulfill the role of an international executive or manager within one year.

How Successful is Davies & Associates with Indian L-1 Cases Involving the “New Office Rules”?

Best Immigration Law Firm Certificate - Us Immigration Advisor

In the fifteen years prior to the publication of these materials every case we have filed where the New Office Rules are applicable has been approved. While there can never be any guarantees our Indian clients have appreciated our success in this area.

US consulate in Hyderabad
Paigah Palace, 1-8-323, Chiran Fort Lane, Begumpet, Secunderabad 500 003
Office: +91-40-4033-8300

India is a nation of entrepreneurs and business owners, many of whom seek their fortunes overseas. Click here for more information about Immigration Options for Indian Nationals and Businesses

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5 months ago

We were in a hurry and Verdie and the team were highly responsive and supportive, even when we threw in some curve balls along the way. We had our visas approved without any issues and felt confident and well prepared for document submissions and the interview. I'd certainly recommend this team for an E2 visa process.

Paolo Domingo
Paolo Domingo
2 months ago

5 stars and a high five! Thank you Verdie and Etta for assisting us with our change of status application. They were very professional and accommodating with all our questions and concerns throughout the process. Despite the time constraint, we pulled it off and we could not have done this without you guys! Keep up the good work!

Amandeep Singh
Amandeep Singh
3 months ago

I had talked with Alex Jovy, he was very quick to respond, had a lot of useful information which I was not aware of. Took time out of his day to discuss my situation and was very helpful. They go into a lot of detail which other companies do not. Overall a great service!

Jean Zhu
Jean Zhu
3 months ago

Alex call me and I had a very pleasant talk with him on the phone regarding E2 visa to USA. He is very nice to work with!

Eduardo Salvo
Eduardo Salvo
4 months ago

I received an world-class help in how to immigrate to the USA succesfully! Alex was very open to answer my questions and is definitely a professional in what he does! Strongly recommend this firm.

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