TN NAFTA Professional Status

Under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) citizens of Canada or Mexico may seek temporary entry to the U.S. as business people to engage in business activities at a professional level, in specific occupations.  

To learn more about TN status, visit

Common Uses

  • Professors
  • Research scientists
  • Engineers
  • Pharmacists


  • 3-year limit, with unlimited extensions
  • TN only available to Canadian and Mexican citizens
    • Does not apply to Canadian landed immigrants
  • TD dependents cannot work; however, they may engage in full or part-time study
  • Non-Canadian TD dependents must apply for entry visas at a U.S. Consulate or Embassy abroad


  • Hiring department contacts Faculty Immigration Services
  • After the position and candidate have been determined to be eligible for TN status:
    • Canadian citizens apply for TN status at a U.S. Port of Entry
    • Mexican citizens must apply for visa a at a U.S. Consulate or Embassy abroad

General Information on TN Status

  • The I-94 number assigned by U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) is evidence of legal status as a TN non-immigrant.
  • If traveling by air or sea, the I-94 number is retrieved online by the FN after entry to the U.S.
  • For land entries, the I-94 number will be issued on a white paper card titled “I-94 Departure Record.”
  • The I-94 number is used to apply for a U.S. social security number and driver's license. It is also required for NDSU Payroll purposes and also used in the driver’s license application process.


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