Previously, a license was required in order to obtain TN visa status. However, following a change in the rules, a license is no longer a prerequisite for a TN visa.


License Previously Required for Admission

  • Previously, regulations provided that Canadian and Mexican citizens had to meet any applicable State licensing requirements before they could enter and work in the U.S. under TN visa status.

Change in Rules Drops Licenses as Prerequisite

  • In 2004, USCIS adopted a rule that removes the requirement that an applicant for a TN must present a license at the time of application for admission to the United States. See 69 FR 60939 (Oct. 13, 2004) and Hrinyak Memo (Oct. 26, 2004). See also, DOS Policy Notice (Jan. 2004).
  • In select instances, a license is noted as an alternative document for entry, but not as a required primary document for entry.
  • In no case is a license required by a prospective TN applicant as the absolute primary documentary requirement for entry.

Licenses Still Required After Admission to U.S.

  • All Canadian and Mexican citizens who enter and work in the U.S. under TN visa status must still abide by any applicable state license requirements.
  • In those jurisdictions where a particular profession or occupation requires a license, State or Federal law will require the TN worker’s employer to ensure that the TN worker has the proper license before he or she commences employment.

Additional Materials:

Revised Aug. 18, 2018