In the Southern San Francisco Bay area of California sits Silicon Valley, that is home to numerous global and start-up technological companies. The Silicon Valley Institute of Regional Studies says one in three people involved in these businesses comes from foreign countries, including Canada.
Further statistics indicate that more than two-thirds of individuals with mathematical and computer skills are foreign-born workers. Moreover, the National Foundation for American Policy that researches immigration says over 50 percent of the start-ups — known as “unicorns” — were established by immigrants.
Many companies rely on the abilities of highly skilled Canadians whose presence in America is backed by the NAFTA trade agreement. These thousands of Canadian technicians, investors and entrepreneurs are in high demand. An additional group of people on special visas are post-graduate students from Canada who work in the U.S. on Optional Practical Training visas.
There are concerns among many that Donald Trump might want to renegotiate current trade agreements and that he might crack down on H1-B visas that are held by foreign workers. However, some hope that the new administration will encourage foreigners, such as Canadians, to establish businesses that will create jobs rather than taking job opportunities away from U.S. citizens.
An example is a man from another country who visited America as part of the 500 Startups Accelerator program on a visitor visa. Because that visa did not allow him to work in the U.S., he recently applied for an L-1 visa that enables him to grow his business and create employment.
While information is instantly available on the internet, much of it is faulty. Obtaining up-to-date advice about leaving Canada to work in the U.S. from trusted lawyers may be more accurate. Because the immigration laws of both Canada and America come into play, the skills of a law firm that is licenced to work in both countries can save time and money. Experienced lawyers can assist immigrants and provide guidance and support throughout any cross-border issues that might arise.