Revisions to the little-known “Nafta visa” that went into effect on Jan. 1 have made it easier for Mexican professionals to work here, according to Rosemary Melville, Atlanta’s district director for U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.
Ms. Melville spoke at the breakfast meeting of the Mexican American Business Chamber on Mexican Independence Day Sept. 16 about the revisions.
“It is important that we share information,” she told the attendees at La Mansion Hall located in the Plaza del Sol in Chamblee. “Some immigration attorneys don’t know about these visas and so many people depend upon rumors.”
Mexicans with a wide variety of professional designations ranging from accountant to zoologist may now apply directly at U.S. consular posts abroad for the visa.
They also are no longer required to obtain an application from the U.S. Labor Department or petition the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services for permission to receive the visa.
According to Ms. Melville, applicants for the visa must continue to possess the required educational background and a letter from the U.S. employer noting a description of the job.
She also said that the visa stamp, which remains in the recipient’s passport, is good for a year and may be extended. “We are interested in facilitating the process,” she added.
To learn more about who may apply for the NAFTA visas, go to www.uscis.gov. The Web site of the Mexican chamber may be found at www.mexicanchamber.org.