Employees: TN Visa

The nonimmigrant NAFTA Professional (TN) visa allows citizens of Canada and Mexico, as NAFTA professionals, to work in the United States in prearranged business activities for U.S. or foreign employers. Permanent residents of Canada and Mexico are not able to apply for TN visas to work as NAFTA professionals. Select TN NAFTA Professionals on the USCIS website to learn more about TN nonimmigrant status.

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Eligibility for NAFTA Professional (TN) Nonimmigrant Status

Canadians and Mexicans may be eligible to work in the United States as NAFTA professionals under the following conditions: 

  • Applicant is a citizen of Canada or Mexico; 
  • Profession is on the NAFTA list; 
  • Position in the United States requires a NAFTA professional; 
  • Applicant will work in a prearranged full-time or part-time job for an employer (see Required Documentation). Self employment is not permitted; 
  • Applicant has the qualifications, meeting the specific requirements, education, and/or experience, of the profession. 

With some exceptions, each profession requires a baccalaureate degree as an entry-level requirement. If a baccalaureate is required, experience cannot be substituted for that degree. In some professions, an alternative to a bachelor's degree is listed. For some professions, experience is required in addition to the degree. For a complete list of professions with minimum education requirements and alternative credentials, see Appendix 1603.D.1 of NAFTA Chapter 16.

Note: Requirements for Canadians and Mexicans are different, as explained below.

Requirements for Canadian Citizens

Canadian citizens usually do not need a visa as a NAFTA Professional, although a visa can be issued to qualified Canadian TN visa applicants upon request. 

A Canadian citizen without a TN visa can apply for TN nonimmigrant status at a U.S. port-of-entry. Learn about these requirements on the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) websites. More information about TN nonimmigrant status is also available on the U.S. Embassy Ottawa website. 

When is a NAFTA Professional (TN) visa required for a Canadian citizen? A Canadian without TN nonimmigrant status, who resides in a third country with a non-Canadian spouse and/or child(ren), and who plans to enter the United States as a NAFTA professional at the same time as the family member(s), will need a TN visa in order for the family members to be eligible to apply for derivative TD nonimmigrant visa(s).

Requirements for Mexican Citizens

Mexican citizens require TN visas to request admission to the United States in this status.