Hiring a TN Employee

TN status is a temporary employment status for individuals from Canada or Mexico.

Under NAFTA (North American Free Trade Agreement), Canadian and Mexican professionals may apply to enter the US for up to three years under the TN visa classification. The TN process does not require U.S. Department of Labor certification or prior approval by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).

  • Canadian nationals trained in one of a published list of professions may obtain TN-1 visa status and enter the US in one day by applying at the US port-of-entry. 
  • Mexican nationals must first apply for a TN-2 visa at the US Consulate/Embassy.
  • New applications and extensions can also be filed using form I-129, and are processed in 2-4 months.

Hiring Process

The hiring department prepares the TN eForm in iBearcatsGlobal.

  1. Prepare a letter signed by the Department Head, addressed to the employee, stating:
    • the dates of the employment requested for the TN status (not to exceed 3 years in duration),
    • the salary being offered,
    • and a description of job duties which demonstrate that the job requires at least a bachelor’s degree in a specific field of study.
  2. A letter to Homeland Security describing how the employment qualifies for TN status.
  3. A check made out to the Department of Homeland Security for the I-129 application fee (if the applicant is in the US and does not plan to obtain TN status at the border). If premium processing is requested, an additional check for the fee is necessary.

The prospective employee will submit

  1. A copy of highest diploma and related transcripts.
    If the degree is NOT from a university in the US, Canada, the United Kingdom, or Australia, submit an evaluation of the equivalent US degree.
  2. Personal information such as:
    • Curriculum vitae;
    • Copies of all current immigration documents (passport, visa, I-94 record) if the employee will not be applying for the TN at the border. 
    • If applying from within the US and the applicant has dependents, Form I-539 and copies of all current immigration documents (passport, visa, I-94 card) for dependents.

Upon receipt of the eForm and documentation, UC International will

  1. Prepare the I-129 application if the employee will not be travelling to the border/embassy to obtain TN status.
  2. Send the employee instructions for check-in and onboarding if obtaining TN status at the border.