What professionals may work in U.S. under NAFTA Chapter 16?

June 11, 2012

Normally in order for a foreign national to work in a country, the employer must demonstrate that no local employee is available to take the job. This is usually the most difficult part for people to work outside their home country.

Under the North America Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) Chapter 16, a large number of professionals may carry out professional activities for an employer or on contract to an enterprise located in a member country. Qualified professionals are exempt from the job-validation process normally required of individuals seeking to work in another country.

To qualify under NAFTA, your profession must be one of the 63 listed below. Note that you must have the necessary education and/or work credential required for the profession. If your profession is regulated, you will normally need to obtain a licence to practise your profession from the regulatory body. Finally, you need to have a valid job offer or service contract in order to benefit from the simplified process under NAFTA Chapter 16. If you have any doubt about your qualification, you should contact an immigration lawyer for assistance.


List of professions under NAFTA Chapter 16


• Accountant

• Architect

• Computer Systems Analyst

• Disaster Relief Insurance Claims Adjuster

• Economist

• Engineer

• Forester

• Graphic Designer

• Hotel Manager

• Industrial Designer

• Interior Designer

• Land Surveyor

• Landscape Architect

• Lawyer (Notary in Quebec)

• Librarian

• Management Consultant

• Mathematician/Statistician

• Range Manager/Range Conservationist

• Research Assistant

• Scientific Technician/Technologist

• Social Worker

• Sylviculturist/Forestry Specialist

• Technical Publications Writer

• Urban Planner/Geographer

• Vocational Counsellor


• Dentist

• Dietician

• Medical Laboratory Technologist

• Nutritionist

• Occupational Therapist

• Pharmacist

• Physician (Teaching or Research only)

• Physiotherapist/Physical Therapist

• Psychologist

• Recreational Therapist

• Registered Nurse

• Veterinarian


• Agriculturist/Agronomist

• Animal Breeder

• Animal Scientist

• Apiculturist

• Astronomer

• Biochemist

• Biologist

• Chemist

• Dairy Scientist

• Entomologist

• Epidemiologist

• Geneticist

• Geochemist

• Geologist

• Geophysicist (Oceanographer)

• Horticulturist

• Meteorologist

• Pharmacologist

• Physicist

• Plant Breeder

• Poultry Scientist

• Soil Scientist

• Zoologist


• College

• Seminary

• University


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