State Department "delinks" L visa validity from petition validity
The new rule benefits those individuals whose home countries’ reciprocity schedules allow L visa validity for a longer time period than the validity listed in the initial L petition approved by DHS, and who have extended their stay while in the United States. For example, the reciprocity schedule for Spain reflects that L visas (L-1 and L-2) could be issued with a 5-year validity period. As a result, a Spanish citizen can now obtain an L-1 visa with a 5-year validity period, even though the employer's initial L petition would be approved for 3 years. When that employer files an extension petition for that Spanish citizen and obtains approval of a 2-year extension of his/her stay in the United States, that Spanish citizen no longer needs to reapply for an L visa if and when he/she leaves the United States during the validity period of that extension petition because the existing L visa in his/her passport would continue to be valid.
For limitations of this new rule, please see the amended section 41.54 as published in the new rule, and 22 CFR 41.112.