I am an employee of a British company, an IT consultancy that trains and hires software developers to employ them as contractors for their clients. I am resident in the UK but I have an Italian passport and my company is trying to transfer me for 4/6 months into their office in New York. I am also in the process / awaiting for a K1 (fiancee) visa so my intention is to return to the UK when the new visa is ready and re-enter the States with it.

I can't get initially transferred with an E2 visa (that's the usual mean my employer uses for its employees) since I'm not a British citizen. That means that now my options are:

  • B1 visa ("Temporary Business Visitor") - my employer used this with its first transferred employees
  • L1b visa ("Intracompany Transferee Specialized Knowledge")

Eligibility for B visa:

I intend to stay temporarily, I have proof that I want to return to the UK because I will be issued the fiancee' visa and have to attend the interview at the consulate in London. I could keep my current rent in the UK too if that helps.

Q1: Is it true though that this type of visa is constrained to a single client/address? (being my employer an IT consultancy that would be an issue because I could easily have to change work location)

Eligibility for L1b visa:

I have been working for my employer for more than 2 years and I could say that I have specialized knowledge for my employer since:

-- "The term specialized knowledge refers to the employee's understanding of the employer company, including its products, services, research, equipment, techniques, management or other interests and its application in international markets, or advanced knowledge of the company's processes and procedures"

-- My employer forged a development process that we use in our projects (they also published two books on this).

Q2: This visa may be the best fit, are there any issues with this given the described circumstances?


  • I think that L1b would be the best option since it has dual intent meaning that I can also get married on it without the need to leave and re-enter the States or stop working while waiting for EAD (Employment Authorization Document)
    – Gabe
    Commented Sep 4, 2017 at 0:31
  • 1
    Have you already applied for the K visa? If so, it may be ill advised for you to apply for another visa. Or perhaps you should abandon that and go for the L visa, as you note. You might want to talk to an immigration lawyer.
    – phoog
    Commented Sep 4, 2017 at 10:28
  • yes I did. I would abandon that for the L visa since the latter has dual intent meaning that I would be able to get married while on an L visa and also avoid the 2 months wait for the EAD.
    – Gabe
    Commented Sep 4, 2017 at 12:52
  • 2
    With regard to the B visa, your pending K application might make it difficult for you to establish the required lack of immigrant intent.
    – phoog
    Commented Sep 4, 2017 at 12:54
  • A very similar case here: switch from K1 to L1b: visajourney.com/forums/topic/…
    – Gabe
    Commented Sep 4, 2017 at 23:37


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