The TN visa is non immigrant visa for professionals listed under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). TN visas are granted to Canadian and Mexican citizens who work in a professional occupation listed on the NAFTA professional list. The following must be satisfied in order to qualify for a TN visa:

  • the profession is on the NAFTA list;
  • the alien possesses the specific criteria for that profession;
  • the prospective position requires someone in that professional capacity and;
  • the alien is going to work for a U.S. employer.

The requirements for Canadians and Mexicans wishing to enter under this classification are not the same. Citizens of Canada initially apply at a U.S. port of entry. The TN applicant must demonstrate that the applicant’s prospective U.S.-based employer is offering him or her a job in the United States which is included on the NAFTA professional list. The applicant must also demonstrate that he or she meets the requirements for the position as outlined in the NAFTA professional list. This may include a copy of the applicant’s college degree and employment records which establish qualification for the prospective job.

How to Apply

Canadian citizens apply for the “TN” status with the U.S. Customs and Border Protection in the Department of Homeland Security (USCBP) at the port of entry. The “TN” status will only be granted if the period of stay is temporary. Canadians have two options in extending their TN status: 1) may have their employer file Form I-129 with the USCIS Nebraska Service Center. This option does not require leaving the U.S., or 2) Canadians may return to Canada to re-apply at the port of entry with the same documentation that is required for an original application.

Mexican citizens must submit an application with a U.S. consulate or file a change of status petition with the Nebraska Service Center, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service. Mexican citizens who wish to extend their TN status can either re-new their application at the U.S. consulate or file an extension with the Nebraska Service Center.

For assistance in applying for the TN Visa please contact our office.


The TN Visa is valid for three years and can be extended in three year increments indefinitely.


Dependents of TN status holders hold TD visa. TD-1 is for Canadian dependents and TD-2 is for Mexican dependents. TD status holders are not permitted to work in the U.S., however they may attend school.

Map with North America depicted in white, with the most populated cities represented as small black dots, with darker shades indicating higher population density

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