Effective immediately, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has issued Policy Guidance PA-2023-29 regarding L-1 petitions filed by Sole Proprietorships and L-1 blanket petitions.
The Policy Guidance clarifies that a sole proprietorship may not file an L-1 petition on behalf of its owner because the sole proprietorship does not exist as a distinct legal entity separate and apart from the owner. This Policy Manual update affirms the existing guidance and further clarifies that an L-1 petition where the owner and beneficiary are the same constitutes an impermissible self-petition. A sole proprietorship is distinguished from a self-incorporated petitioner (such as a corporation or limited liability company with a single owner), where the corporation or single member limited liability company is a separate and distinct legal entity from its owner, which may petition for that owner.
L-1 Blanket Extensions
The Guidance also clarifies that failure by a petitioning organization to timely file an extension of an approved blanket L-1 petition does not trigger the 3-year waiting period before another blanket petition may be filed.