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This is our last installment of our Corporate Immigration Law Firm series. We have tried to cover the major issues affecting companies wishing to hire and transfer employees across borders. You can find our other blog postings dealing with issues about corporate employees here and HR professionals here as well as a discussion on the role of lawyers in corporate immigration cases here.
The last but not least issue to tackle is a discussion on the unique needs of smaller companies in corporate immigration matters. An entire book can be written about this one. Small companies ranging from the mircocap start-up with a few employees to mid-sized firms with a few hundred, all have their very specific needs.
The smaller the company, the more crucial it is to establish credibility as part of the equation for successful immigration and visa applications. Smaller, lessor known companies face the extra hurdle of showing that they are legitimate corporate sponsors of foreign workers or candidates for cross border expansion requiring intercompany transfer visas. Depending on the business, it may be important, in addition to the regular supporting documentation associated with visa applications, to present a detailed profile of the company in question. Information such as: What does the company do? How many employees? How long in business? What are its finances like? –may be in order. Questions not really relevant for outfits like Coke, McDonald’s or Microsoft. In essence, not only are visa applicants being scrutinized but also their sponsoring companies may be under the microscope.
When we take on accounts for small businesses we often ask for a complete company background with a view of preparing an impressive profile that will be included in our visa applications. Such documentation goes a long way to address any concerns by the visa officer relating to the viability of the company which is unknown to him or her.
Small businesses are dynamic participants in the cross border landscape and deserve all the respect their larger corporate counter-parts enjoy. But to get the respect they deserve, the small company has to overcome the bias that it’s not just a “mom n’ pop shop” trying to pull as fast one. To do this, show your cards! It’s a winning strategy.
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