If you are a U.S. immigration law firm working with multinational corporations or growing U.S.-based companies seeking to expand globally, you may want to support your corporate clients with international relocations and document management. But unless you have an international presence or an existing network of international immigration partners, you may not be sure how to provide these services without opening overseas offices or spending time building this network of external partners.
This article discusses how U.S. immigration law firms can provide various global immigration related services without being an international immigration law firm to offer an added value and more comprehensive global immigration service package for clients.
3 simple ways U.S. immigration law firms can help corporate clients with a global immigration service
There are several ways U.S. immigration law firms can help corporate clients with global immigration needs, whether they already have international clients or want to market to and eventually serve international clients in the future. There are three global immigration services that U.S.-based immigration law firms can offer.
U.S. immigration law firms can help companies obtain business visas worldwide.
Companies generally need to apply for business visas, usually short-term non-immigrant visas, for employees who need to travel for business meetings or other short business trips to offices or client sites around the world. While many individuals apply for business visitor visas on their own, U.S. immigration law firms can offer such a service and assist their global clients with these applications for different countries around the world.
These visa applications generally do not require a lawyer, but they can require information and documentation, and it is easy for mistakes to be made when done by non-experts. It is a simple, important and really valuable added service that saves the client time and helps ensure they get it right.
That said, while applying for business visitor visas may not require legal expertise, it does require a working knowledge of local entry requirements, including what evidence or documents are needed, information about the purpose of travel, etc. At this point, U.S. immigration law firms can take two routes to provide this service: learn about these various requirements and do the work themselves, or partner with a company that can help them file the local business visitor visa application.
If you choose the last option, make sure the company has offices and branches in the different countries you need, has processes in place to make sure all the rules are followed correctly, and can offer you an affordable service so you can then pass the fee on to your corporate client and make some money too.
U.S. immigration law firms can help companies coordinate the legalization or authentication of documents.
If a U.S.-based company is trying to hire a foreign national, say on an H-1B visa, they will inevitably need some supporting documentation. This could be anything from academic transcripts to birth or marriage certificates if they are bringing a family member with them or anything else that might be important to secure the visa.
These documents may need to be obtained in the prospective employee's home country, but they may need to have an additional layer of certification, whether it is an apostille or other authentication. Most people have no experience in certifying or authenticating documents, so they rely on the U.S. employer seeking to hire them and their U.S. immigration law firm for support. But as you can imagine, a company or law firm in the US may not know how best to authenticate or apostille a document in another country, especially if these documents may need to be acquired in multiple countries, which can become complex, especially if the employee has relocated over the years.
So what is the best solution? Providing this service as a US immigration law firm would be a great value add and can be outsourced to a company that knows how to work with document authentication and certification worldwide. Again, if you choose this route and outsource to a professional document management firm, make sure they have a global presence and specializes in this type of work.
Now you can provide a complete solution to your global customer, outsource the work to an expert, pass the cost on to your customer and make it work financially.
U.S. immigration law firms can assist companies in translating documents
When dealing with global clients, it is also inevitable that documents will need to be translated, e.g. diplomas, powers of attorney, patents, other legal documents and much more. This could be in English for an employee bound for the U.S. or in another language for an employee going to another part of the world. While immigration law firms do not typically have official in-house translators, this is a valuable service they may consider offering through a partner and as needed, especially for common languages and visa types.
Translations are incredibly important, so it is important to work with a company that offers official translation services and guarantees that those translations will be delivered to the highest professional standard and in a timely manner. Ideally, you don't want to work with several translation professionals in different countries and for different languages, but rather with one company that provides translation services in many languages, at least the most common ones.at least the most common ones.