L-1A New Office Cases - Why does the size of the lease matter?


Quite frequently when a new L-1A office is in the process of being established in the U.S., the U.S. company, in order to save funds, leases only a few hundred square feet of office space. From a business point of view that seems reasonable - after all why lease more space than what you initially need?

The problem, however, with this approach is that the USCIS will often compare the size of the leased office space with the number of employees projected to be hired in the U.S. within the first 12 months of the new L-1A company's operations, and, if the size of the lease is assessed by the USCIS as insufficient to accommodate the number of projected employees, the USCIS will RFE the case.

And, if a new lease is obtained after RFE has been issued, the USCIS may claim that the only reason your client is now amending the lease is because the USCIS issued the RFE (Matter of Izummi) and may deny the case.

Thus, making sure that the initial lease includes sufficient office (and other when applicable) space for all of the employees to be hired within the first 12 months of operations is crucial.

Of course, the number of employees (and type of employees) to be hired in the first 12 months of U.S. "new office" operations is also very carefully scrutinized by the USCIS ("One Year Requirement") and we will address that issue in one of our future Tips.

Thank you for reading and have a great week!

Reprinted with permission.

About The Author

Dino Palangic is the founder of Faveo Paralegals which provides per-case, flat-fee immigration paralegal services to law firms and in-house legal departments of corporations across the United States. They are U.S. based and available via email, phone, or Skype. Their staff previously worked for top U.S. national law firms and in-house departments of major Fortune 500 Corporations. Their paralegals adhere to the highest ethical and professional standards set for paralegals by the American Bar Association.

The opinions expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect the opinion of ILW.COM.