When temporary workers from Canada or Mexico are looking to be hired by businesses within the United States, they will need to pay particularly close attention to a few procedural measures. As long as individuals follow the rules as set out by the U. S. Customs and Border Protection Agency, Canadian and Mexican travelers should be fine.
The Trade NAFTA “TN” category applies to a particular sub-set of workers who will be working in the United States for a short period of time, often for under a year. The allowance of workers from Canada and Mexico was reached during the working out of the North American Free Trade Agreement, which is updated with newer stipulations every few years.
Workers from Canada and Mexico must meet several requirements in order to work in the United States for up to three years. First and foremost, they must be citizens of either Canada or Mexico, and they must be able to produce the relevant documentation so that the paperwork can be filled out and submitted to the appropriate agency. All documentation must be handed over in full.
Workers from Mexico or Canada must also be employed, either full-time or part-time, in a job that has been previously arranged. This means, in short, that self-employment and independent contracting are simply not allowed. Documentation of such a prearranged job, which must be in a pre-approved sector, must be shown before the permit can effectively be granted. Employment in illegal sectors is of course prohibited and will result in removal from the country with penalties and fines.
According to NAFTA, there is no limit as to the number of times individuals can apply for TN status. As long as they remain a temporary non-immigrant, they can continue to work in the country. If they seek immigrant status at some point in the future, then the bylaws, as set out in NAFTA, will no longer apply. Applications can be resubmitted every three years so that employment can continue without any interruption.
Health-care workers may require an extra Visa screen, along with proof of professional qualifications. This may apply to registered nurses, physical therapists, occupational therapists, audiologists, or speech language pathologists. If men and women fall into these categories, then the Visa screen must be completed before a temporary occupational visa can be obtained.
In some instances, Canadians might be denied entry to the United States because of crimes of moral turpitude. The legal framework for such crimes can be complex. It is also possible that individuals could have problems obtaining a new visa if they had overstayed on a previous Visa. Inadmissibility may be overturned in some instances, but the proper paperwork will always need to be filed out in full before the application can be considered.
In the end, Canadian and Mexican workers who wish to enter the U. S. Under a NAFTA “TN” Visa must meet all of the requirements. As long as workers follow the laws and submit the proper paperwork, they will have a good chance of being approved. Staying in the good graces of the American legal system will be critical.
Official information can be found at: http://www.cbp.gov/travel/canadian-and-mexican-citizens