Call Us Today: 202-787-1944


Immigration News
Changes in immigration that impact your life.

Home  >  Immigration News  >  News Archive  >  Work Visas  >  News Article

News Jump: 


Actuaries and Plant Pathologists included under NAFTA
ARTICLE TOOLS
Print This Article
Discuss This Topic
Create News Alerts
DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY

Adding Actuaries and Plant Pathologists to Appendix 1603.D.1 of the North American Free Trade Agreement

AGENCY: U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, DHS.

ACTION: Final rule.

SUMMARY: This final rule adopts without substantive change a proposed rule that was published in the Federal Register by the former Immigration and Naturalization Service (Service). This final rule amends the Department of Homeland Security's (Department's) regulations by adding Actuaries and Plant Pathologists to Appendix 1603.D.1 of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and by modifying the licensure requirements for Canadian citizens seeking admission to the United States as "trade NAFTA" (TN) nonimmigrant aliens. These amendments reflect the agreements made among the three parties to the NAFTA and will facilitate travel to and business in the United States.
On March 1, 2003, the Service transferred from the Department of Justice to the Department, pursuant to the Homeland Security Act of 2002 (Pub. L. 107-296). Accordingly, the Service's adjudication function transferred to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) of the Department.

DATES: This final rule is effective November 12, 2004.

FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Craig Howie, Staff Officer, Business and Trade Services Branch, Program and Regulations Development, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, Department of Homeland Security, 425 I Street, NW., ULLICO Building, 3rd Floor, Washington, DC 20536, telephone (202) 514-3228.

SUPPLEMENTARY INFORMATION:

What Is NAFTA?

On December 17, 1992, the United States, Canada and Mexico signed NAFTA. NAFTA entered into force on January 1, 1994, creating one of the largest trading areas in the world. Besides trade, NAFTA allows for the temporary entry of qualified business persons from each of the parties to the agreement. NAFTA is comprised of 22 chapters. Chapter 16 of NAFTA is entitled "Temporary Entry of Business Persons," and in addition to reflecting the preferential trading relationship between the parties to the agreement, it reflects the member nations' desire to facilitate temporary entry on a reciprocal basis. It also establishes procedures for temporary entry, addresses the need to ensure border security and seeks to protect the domestic labor force in the member nations.

Who Is a TN Nonimmigrant Alien?

A TN nonimmigrant alien is a citizen of Canada or Mexico who seeks admission to the United States, under the provisions of Section D of Annex 1603 of NAFTA, to engage in business activities at a professional level as provided for in the Annex. NAFTA parties have agreed that 63 occupations qualify as professions. These occupations are listed in the Appendix 1603.D.1 to Annex 1603 to the NAFTA found in 8 CFR 214.6(c). Canadian and Mexican citizens seeking to engage in occupations not included in Appendix 1603.D.1 to Annex 1603 are not eligible for classification as TN nonimmigrants.

What Changes Were Proposed in the Proposed Rule?

In the proposed rule published on December 19, 2000 at 65 FR 79320, the former Service proposed to add the occupation of actuary to the list of professions in Appendix 1603.D.1. In addition, the rule proposed to include plant pathologist to the Appendix 1603.D.1 as a footnote to the occupation of biologist. The former Service also proposed to change the licensure requirements for Canadian TN aliens applying for admission to the United States described at 8 CFR 214.6(e)(3)(ii)(F). The rule further proposed to remove 8 CFR 214.6(l), which relates to the transition period for Canadian citizens who were admitted to the United States under the United States-Canada Free Trade Agreement that existed before the effective date of NAFTA. The former

Service also proposed to change all references to the Northern Service Center to the Nebraska Service Center to reflect the center's current name. Finally, the former Service proposed to remove the term "diplomas, or certificates" from 8 CFR 214.6(d)(2)(ii) and at 8 CFR 214.6(e)(3)(ii) since these regulatory cites are inconsistent with the footnotes to the Appendix.

Did the Former Service Receive Any Comments in Response to the Proposed Rule?

Yes, the former Service received 12 comments on the proposed rule. Seven of the comments dealt with the proposal that would add actuaries and plant pathologists to NAFTA and five comments related to the proposal to modify the licensure requirements for Canadian TN nonimmigrants. One of the comments addressing the proposed licensure requirements for Canadian TN nonimmigrants was actually a number of questions relating to the process that the former Service (now Department) uses to determine whether an alien has an appropriate license to practice in his or her occupation or profession. Since the questions posed in this comment letter do not directly relate to the proposed rule, this comment will not be discussed.

None of the comments addressed the technical changes that the former Service noted in the proposed rule. These technical changes include the removal from the regulations of the discussion of the transition period for Canadian citizens who were admitted to the United States under the former United States-Canada Free Trade Agreement, changing references to the "Northern Service Center" to "Nebraska Service Center," and removal of the term "diplomas, or certificates" from 8 CFR 214.6(d)(2)(ii) and 8 CFR 214.6(e)(3)(ii) since these regulatory cites are inconsistent with the footnotes to the appendix.

The Department published an interim final rule on March 10, 2004 (69 FR 11287) which implemented changes to the TN application process resulting from the sunset of some NAFTA requirements imposed on Mexican TN's. The changes in that interim final rule resolved the technical issues referenced above, and this rule finalizes the technical changes noted in the proposed rule.

Why Did the Former Service Propose To Change the Licensure Requirements for Canadian TN Nonimmigrants?

To ensure that the former Service's regulations implementing Chapter 16 are in conformity with the obligations of the United States under the Agreement, the former Service proposed to remove 8 CFR 214.6(e)(3)(ii)(F). This provision requires the presentation of a license by a Canadian citizen as an entry requirement under the NAFTA.

For detailed Notice published in the Federal Register, please click here.


ARTICLE TOOLS
Print This Article
Discuss This Topic
Create News Alerts



MORE WORK VISAS STORIES:
H-1B1, E-3 Nonimmigrants Eligible for 240 Days Continued Employment When Extension Application is Pending
Additional H-1B and L-1 Filing Fees Imposed for Certain Employers
Border Security Fee $2,000 and $2,250 For H-1B and L-1 Petitions Is No Longer Required
Infosys Pays Record $34 million to Settle Allegations of Systemic Visa Fraud and Abuse of Immigration Processes
More >>

TOP STORIES:
USCIS October 2016 Visa Bulletin Update
Visa Bulletin October 2016: EB-2 and EB-3 Priority Dates Advance For All Countries
USCIS September 2016 Visa Bulletin Update
Change In Filing Address For Certain H-1B and H-1B1 Petitions
More >>

News Jump: 

U.S. Immigration Attorney - Consult Now!

IMMIGRATION CENTER
Immigration Services
  Fast, Easy and Economical Avoid Costly Immigration Errors!
Immigration Guide
 Know Your U.S. Immigration Options
Immigration Law FAQ
 Detailed Answers to Your Immigration Questions
Immigration Articles
  Interesting and Useful Articles on a Variety of Relevant Topics

How can we help you?
MESSAGE BOARDS
How do I fill Form I-129?
When do I start Green Card?

Discuss US Immigration
NEWSLETTER - FREE!
Receive latest immigration updates and free legal tips by e-mail. Sign up now!
IMMIGRATION DICTIONARY
Legal terms explained in plain English!
RELATED ARTICLES
H1B Address Change of Work Locations: When Do You Have To File H1B Amended Petitions?
H1B Visa Lottery 2016: Improving Your Odds of Success
H1B Visa Cap 2016: Things You Must Know
Filing H1B Cap 2017 Petitions:How To Get A Head Start With VisaPro’s H1B Visa 2017 Timeline
H1B Cap Exempt Employers: How Do You Find Out If You Qualify?
H-1B Cap Has Reached:How Do You Hire H-1B Cap Exempt Candidates?
2017 H1B Cap Petitions:How To Properly File With USCIS
H1B Cap Exempt – Are You Eligible?
5 Common H1B Cap 2017 Filing Mistakes - How to Avoid Them
H1B Cap 2017 Filing Secrets: Why You Should Plan Now?
More Articles...

CONSULT ATTORNEY
Get a detailed, written opinion online in less than 3 business days from a licensed immigration attorney.
Experienced Immigration Attorneys - Consult Online or By Telephone

YOUR SUBSCRIPTIONS
Alerts & Newsletter
Create and Manage your
e-mail alerts for FREE.
RSS