Thursday, January 5, 2023
The U.S. State Department recently updated its visa reciprocity schedule for citizens of Mexico, and now provides two visa validity period options for TN visa applicants.
Mexican citizens may request a 48-month TN visa validity period by paying a visa reciprocity fee of $382.
Alternatively, they can request a 12-month TN visa validity period by paying a reciprocity fee of $104.
This option also applies to TD visa applicants (the dependents of TN visa holders).
The visa reciprocity fees are in addition to the $160 visa application fee (MRV fee). The visa reciprocity fee is only charged if the visa is approved.
Pursuant to the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) (previously the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA)), TN status is available to Canadian and Mexican citizens who desire to work in the United States in one of the occupations listed in the USMCA schedule.
A TN worker can enter the United States to work for up to three years at a time, and TN status may be extended for three-year periods for as long as the person maintains “nonimmigrant intent” – the intent to depart the United States at the end of their stay in TN status.
Dependents are not authorized to work while in the United States.
Canadian citizens are visa exempt and are granted TN status at a port of entry or preflight inspection station, while Mexican citizens are required to obtain a TN / TD visa from a U.S. Consular Post abroad prior to entering the U.S.
Effect of the new Four-Year Visa Option
This State Department offering is a welcome change for Mexican TN visa applicants.
Prior to this change, the reciprocity schedule only allowed for the issuance of a 12-month visa.
Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officers should issue the permissible 3-year period of stay (which remains unchanged).