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Employment Based Green Card

U.S. Lawful Permanent Residency can be obtained through an offer of employment or through the foreign national's own underlying qualifications.  The following are the employment based preference categories:

(1) First Preference (EB-1) including EB-1A extraordinary ability in the sciences, arts, education, business or athletics, EB-1B outstanding professors or researchers, and EB-1C certain multinational managers and executives

(2) Second Preference (EB-2) foreign nationals who are members of a profession holding an advanced degree or with exceptional ability including the National Interest Waiver

(3) Third Preference (EB-3) certain skilled workers, professionals, and other workers

(4) Fourth Preference (EB-4) special immigrants including religious workers

(5) Fifth Preference (EB-5) immigrant investors

EB-1

EB-1A: Extraordinary Ability

You can self-petition and an offer of employment is not required.

You are required to demonstrate extraordinary ability in the sciences, arts, education, business or athletics through sustained national or international acclaim. 

Extraordinary ability is demonstrated through a one time achievement (e.g., Pulitzer, Oscar, Olympic Medal) or by meeting at least 3 of the 10 following criteria: 

  • Evidence of receipt of lesser nationally or internationally recognized prizes or awards for excellence

  • Evidence of your membership in associations in the field which demand outstanding achievement of their members

  • Evidence of published material about you in professional or major trade publications or other major media

  • Evidence that you have been asked to judge the work of others, either individually or on a panel

  • Evidence of your original scientific, scholarly, artistic, athletic, or business-related contributions of major significance to the field

  • Evidence of your authorship of scholarly articles in professional or major trade publications or other major media

  • Evidence that your work has been displayed at artistic exhibitions or showcases

  • Evidence of your performance of a leading or critical role in distinguished organizations

  • Evidence that you command a high salary or other significantly high remuneration in relation to others in the field

  • Evidence of your commercial successes in the performing arts

EB-1B: Outstanding Professors or Researchers

An offer of employment is required.  The employment must be a tenure or tenure track teaching position or a comparable research position at a University or other institution of higher education.

You must have at least 3 years of experience teaching or doing research in your academic field.

You are required to demonstrate international recognition for your outstanding achievements in a particular academic field.  You will need to include evidence of at least two of the following:

  • Evidence of receipt of major prizes or awards for outstanding achievement

  • Evidence of membership in associations that require their members to demonstrate outstanding achievement

  • Evidence of published material in professional publications written by others about the alien's work in the academic field

  • Evidence of participation, either on a panel or individually, as a judge of the work of others in the same or allied academic field

  • Evidence of original scientific or scholarly research contributions in the field

  • Evidence of authorship of scholarly books or articles (in scholarly journals with international circulation) in the field

EB-1C: Multinational Managers and Executives 

An offer of employment is required.  

 

The employment must be with the employer, an affiliate of the employer, or a subsidiary of the employer for which you worked for at least one of the past three years outside of the U.S.  Your work for the firm or corporation outside of the U.S. must have been in the role of a manager or executive.  

The petitioning employer must be a U.S. employer and have been doing business for at least a year as an affiliate, a subsidiary, or as the same corporation or other legal entity as the employer for which you worked for outside of the U.S.

 
 
 

 

EB-2

EB-2: Advanced Degree

An offer of employment is required.  

 

The position must require an advanced degree.  

You must have an advanced degree or the equivalent.  (i.e., a Bachelor's degree and at least 5 years of post-Bachelor's degree progressive experience in the field).  You must provide documentation of your U.S. or foreign equivalent advanced degree through an official academic record or official academic of your U.S. or foreign equivalent advance degree through an official academic transcript plus letters from any current and past employers demonstrating at least 5 years of post Bachelor's degree progressive experience in the field.  

EB-2: Exceptional Ability

An offer of employment is required.  

Demonstrate exceptional ability (i.e., "a degree of expertise significantly above that ordinarily encountered") in the science, arts, or business by meeting at least three of the following criteria:

  • Official academic record showing that you have a degree, diploma, certificate, or similar award from a college, university, school, or other institution of learning relating to your area of exceptional ability

  • Letters documenting at least 10 years of full-time experience in your occupation

  • A license to practice your profession or certification for your profession or occupation

  • Evidence that you have commanded a salary or other remuneration for services that demonstrates your exceptional ability

  • Membership in a professional association(s)

  • Recognition for your achievements and significant contributions to your industry or field by your peers, government entities, professional or business organizations

  • Other comparable evidence of eligibility is also acceptable.

EB-2: National Interest Waiver (NIW)

An offer of employment is not required.  

Generally must demonstrate exceptional ability (i.e., "a degree of expertise significantly above that ordinarily encountered") by meeting at least three of the following criteria:

  • Official academic record showing that you have a degree, diploma, certificate, or similar award from a college, university, school, or other institution of learning relating to your area of exceptional ability

  • Letters documenting at least 10 years of full-time experience in your occupation

  • A license to practice your profession or certification for your profession or occupation

  • Evidence that you have commanded a salary or other remuneration for services that demonstrates your exceptional ability

  • Membership in a professional association(s)

  • Recognition for your achievements and significant contributions to your industry or field by your peers, government entities, professional or business organizations

  • Other comparable evidence of eligibility is also acceptable.

AND also demonstrate that it is in the interest of the U.S. that you permanently work in the U.S.

EB-3

EB-3: Skilled Workers

An offer of employment for a permanent full time job is required.  

You must be able to demonstrate at least 2 years of training or work experience in the field.

You must be coming to perform work for which U.S. workers are not available.

EB-3: Professional

An offer of employment for a permanent full time job is required.  

You must be able to demonstrate that you have a Bachelor's degree or the foreign equivalent.  There is no work experience substitution for education.

 

A Bachelor's degree must be a normal requirement for entry into the field.

 

You must be coming to perform work for which U.S. workers are not available.

EB-3: Unskilled

An offer of employment for a permanent full time job is required.  

You must be capable of performing unskilled labor (i.e., requiring less than 2 years of training or work experience) a the time of filing.  The position must not be temporary or seasonal. 

You must be coming to perform work for which U.S. workers are not available.

EB-4

May be able to self-petition depending on category.

Special immigrants include the following:

 

  • Returning Lawful Permanent Resident

  • Former Citizen regaining U.S. Citizenship

  • Former Employee Who Worked for the U.S. Government Abroad

  • Former Employees of International Organizations

  • Special Immigrant Juvenile

  • Religious Worker

  • Panama Canal Company Employee, Canal Zone Government Employee, U.S. Government in the Canal Zone
    Employee

  • Physician

  • G-4 International Organization Employee or Family Member or NATO-6 Employee or Family Member

  • U.S. Armed Forces Member

  • Afghanistan or Iraq National who worked with the U.S. Armed Forces as a translator

  • Iraq National who worked for or on behalf of the U.S. Government in Iraq

  • Afghanistan National who worked for or on behalf of the U.S. Government or the International Security
    Assistance Force (ISAF) in Afghanistan

  • An abused spouse or child of a U.S. citizen or lawful permanent resident, or an abused parent of a U.S. citizen son
    or daughter pursuant to the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA)

  • Broadcaster for the International Broadcasting Bureau 

  • Other classifications not listed above may be eligible to use Form I-360. See here for updates.

 
 

EB-5

  • Make the necessary investment in a new commercial enterprise in the United States; and

  • Plan to create or preserve 10 permanent full-time jobs for qualified U.S. workers.

  • USCIS provides further information regarding the specific requirements for the EB-5 green card here.