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What is TN visa: 

The non immigrant NAFTA professional visa, also known as TN visa, was created by the North American Free Trade Agreement in 1994. This type of visa allows citizens of Canada and Mexico to work in the United States as NAFTA professionals in certain professional occupations.

Advantages of TN Visa:

  • If you are a Canadian citizen, you are not required to apply for a TN-1 Visa at a U.S. consulate. You can submit required documents to a U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officer at a port of entry when you enter the United States. It only costs you $56.

  • Spouse and children of a TN Visa holder can apply for a special TD status and  accompany the holder to stay in the United States, but they are not allowed to work.

  • TN Visa holders are able to extend their stays indefinitely.

  • TN Visa holders can work on a part-time basis.

  • TN Visa holders can work for multiple employers in the United States.

  • The processing time is rapid.

  • The cost of TN Visa application is moderate:

    1. For Canadian citizens applying for TN Visa directly at the US border: $56 ($50 for the filing fee, $6 for I-94 fee)

    2. For applying at a US embassy or consulate: $46


Eligibility requirements of TN Visa: 

  1. Applicant must be a citizen of Canada or Mexico.

  2. Applicant must work as NAFTA professionals.

  3. Applicant meets the specific requirements (education or experience) of the profession.

  4. Applicant has an offer letter from the US employer.

  5. Applicant needs to get an employment letter from his or her US employer, in which the employer should indicate the applicant’s job responsibility,anticipated length of  stay in the US, educational qualifications and payment information.


Period of Validity and Extension of TN Visa: 

  1. TN visa has a maximum period of validity of three years.

  2. Theoretically, TN visa can be renewed indefinitely.

  3. It is difficult to apply for an employment-based green card for a TN visa holder.  


How to renew TN Visa:

  1. Mail form I-129 (Petition for a Non-immigrant Worker) to USCIS; Or

  2. Renew TN-1 Visa at border.

TN Visa Occupations: 

  1. General Occupation

  2. Medical Occupation

  3. Scientist Occupation

  4. Teacher Occupation

Relevant Article:

All About The TN Visa for Canadian and Mexican Nationals







Joseph Hamel

Senior Associate


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