TN for Industrial Designer in Cosmetics Industry

The company in this TN application was an innovative leader in the competitive cosmetic brush design and manufacturing industry. The company had limited its business to the design and manufacturing of its customer’s cosmetic brushes and products, but wanted to design, develop, and launch its own, unique personal cosmetic brush and accessory line.

In order to pursue this new business plan, the company sought the services of a professional cosmetic product and merchandising designer. The applicant possessed a post-secondary Fashion Arts diploma and five years of professional experience in designing and developing cosmetic brushes, accessories, and merchandising display schematics and concepts.

The company had originally filed a TN application for this worker under the category of Management Consultant. However, when presented at the border, CBP denied the application because the job description did not fall within the scope of a Management Consultant. The job description “lacked the element of being supernumerary,” and appeared to be “a fulltime position or a newly created position.”

The company then retained Serotte Reich & Wilson to rehabilitate the TN application. Upon our review of the prior TN application, we also concluded that the job description and duties did not fall within the ambit of a Management Consultant. The job description and job duties did, however, fall within the scope of an Industrial Designer.

In order to qualify for TN status as an Industrial Designer, NAFTA requires that the applicant possess a “Baccalaureate or Licenciatura Degree; or post-secondary diploma or post-secondary certificate, and three years’ experience.” The Dictionary of Occupational Titles, and the Occupational Outlook Handbook defines an Industrial Designer as a designer who “originates and develops ideas to design the form of manufactured products” and who combines “artistic talent with research on the use of a product, on customer needs, and on marketing, materials, and production methods to create the most functional and appealing design that will be competitive with others in the marketplace.”

We contended that the applicant satisfied the NAFTA requirements for TN status as an Industrial Designer because she possessed a post-secondary diploma in Fashion Arts and five years’ relevant experience in product design, development and merchandising. By presenting this case under the TN category for Industrial Design rather than as a Management Consultant, we were successful in obtaining TN status for this client.