How to Complete the TN Visa Application

Updated on March 27, 2024

Are you a Canadian or Mexican professional looking to work in the United States under the TN visa category? Navigating the TN visa application process can seem daunting, but with the right information and preparation, you can increase your chances of success. In this blog post, we’ll provide a step-by-step guide to help you understand the TN visa application process and offer valuable tips along the way.

30 Second Recap:

The TN visa application process involves determining eligibility, gathering required documents, and applying either at a U.S. port of entry (for Canadians) or at a U.S. embassy or consulate (for Mexicans). Required documents include proof of citizenship, a job offer letter, educational credentials, and applicable fees. Maintaining TN status after approval involves working only for the specified employer and position and ensuring passport and visa validity.

Step 1: Determine Your Eligibility

Before beginning the application process, ensure that you meet the following eligibility criteria:

  1. You are a citizen of Canada or Mexico.
  2. You have a job offer from a US employer in one of the professions listed under the USMCA (formerly NAFTA) agreement.
  3. You possess the required education and/or experience for your profession, as specified in the USMCA list.
  4. You intend to work in the US on a temporary basis.

Step 2: Gather Required Documents

Organize the following documents for your TN visa application:

  1. Proof of Canadian or Mexican citizenship (passport or birth certificate)
  2. Job offer letter from your US employer, outlining your position, duties, salary, and length of employment
  3. Educational credentials (degrees, diplomas, or professional licenses) related to your profession
  4. Experience letters or other evidence demonstrating your qualifications for the position, if applicable
  5. Fees for visa processing (for Mexican citizens) or border crossing (for Canadian citizens)

Step 3: Apply for Your TN Visa

The application process differs slightly for Canadian and Mexican citizens:

For Canadians:

  1. Apply at a US port of entry or pre-clearance location.
  2. Present your documents to a Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officer for review.
  3. If approved, pay the border crossing fee and enter the US with your TN status.

For Mexicans:

  1. Schedule a visa interview at a US embassy or consulate in Mexico.
  2. Attend the interview and provide your documents for review.
  3. If approved, pay the visa processing fee and receive your TN visa.
  4. Enter the US with your TN visa.

Step 4: Maintain Your TN Status

Once you’ve obtained your TN visa and entered the US, it’s crucial to maintain your status:

  1. Work only for the employer and in the position specified in your TN visa application.
  2. Ensure your passport and TN visa remain valid throughout your stay.
  3. If you need to extend your stay or change employers, work with your new employer to file a new TN visa application.

Final Thoughts

Applying for a TN visa as a Canadian or Mexican professional involves determining your eligibility, gathering required documents, and following the appropriate application steps. By understanding the process and preparing a strong application, you can increase your chances of obtaining a TN visa and pursuing your career goals in the United States. Remember to stay organized, pay attention to details, and don’t hesitate to seek professional guidance if needed. With the right approach, your TN visa application can be a smooth and successful experience.

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Frank Gogol

I’m a firm believer that information is the key to financial freedom. On the Stilt Blog, I write about the complex topics — like finance, immigration, and technology — to help immigrants make the most of their lives in the U.S. Our content and brand have been featured in Forbes, TechCrunch, VentureBeat, and more.

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