Types of EB-1 Visa, the Persons These may be Granted to and the Specific Requirements Under Each Type
The EB-1 visa, which is an Employment-based First Preference Immigration petition, is granted to foreign nationals who can be classified as “priority workers,” that is, individuals who are recognized as the most able and accomplished in their chosen field. As priority workers, they are given the opportunity to continue their work as well as (permanently) reside in the US. There are three types of the EB-1 visa that is granted by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). These types, the specific persons who may be granted it and the specific requirements that will have to be met to be considered eligible for it, are as follows:
1. EB-1A Visa or Extraordinary Ability Category. Thus far the most advantageous immigration visa granted by the US government, this EB-1A or EB 1-1 visa is conferred to aliens with extraordinary ability in the field of science, arts, education, business, or sports. This ability should have been shown and proven through sustained acclaim, nationally or internationally, and the accomplishments, recognized internationally through a major international award (similar to a Pulitzer Prize, a Nobel Prize, or an Olympic Gold Medal). The absence of a major international award can be offset, though, by presenting evidences in at least 3 of the following (10) criteria:
- Receipt of lesser nationally or internationally recognized prizes or awards for excellence in the chosen field of endeavor
- Membership in associations that require no less than outstanding achievements from their members (achievements are determined as outstanding or not by respected national or international experts in the same field)
- Information about the foreign national and his/her work or extraordinary skills that is published in professional or major trade publications or major media
- Having judged, whether individually or as a member of a panel, the work of others in the same field or similar discipline
- Contribution of an original (piece of work or idea) that has a major significance in the field of science, education, arts, sports, or business
- Published scholarly articles(authored by the foreign national) in professional or major trade publications or other major media
- Original work displayed at artistic exhibitions or showcases
- Performance of a critical or lead role in a distinguished organization
- Salary or remuneration that is significantly higher compared to others in the same field
- Commercial successes in the performing arts
Qualifying for an EB-1A visa presents many advantages, including: exemption from labor certification; exemption from having to present a job offer from an American employer; faster time (compared to EB-2 and EB-3 immigration categories) in obtaining a Green Card; the petitioner, or the qualified foreign national, can also immediately provide a green card for his/her spouse and unmarried children (under the age of 21); and, the alien with an extraordinary ability can also petition himself/herself.
2. EB-1B/EB1-OR Visa or Outstanding Professors and Researchers Category. This type of visa is granted to professors or researchers who are recognized as outstanding performers in the academic field and so are offered employment (in the US) by a US employer. For the prospected outstanding professor or researcher to be granted a US visa, the US employer intending to hire him/her should:
A. Accomplish Form I-140, an Immigrant Petition for Alien Worker. Form I-140 is a request made with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) to classify a foreign national as eligible for an employment-based immigrant visa;
B. Attach a permanent job offer letter to Form I-140; and,
C. Submit evidence of foreign national’s (at least three years) teaching or research experience and documents that will prove that at least two of the following criteria are met:
- Receipt of major prizes/awards for outstanding achievement
- Membership in associations that require no less than outstanding achievements from
- Materials about the alien’s work in the academic field which others wrote and which
are published in professional publications
- Participating as judge, either as a member of a panel or alone, in judging the work of
others in the same or related academic field
- Contribution of original scientific or scholarly research in his/her chosen field
- Authorship of scholarly articles or books in his/her field which are printed in
scholarly journals with international circulation
3. EB-1C or Multinational Manager or Executive Category. The EB-1C visa, which is another type of visa in the First Preference category, may be granted by the USCIS to a foreign national or immigrant who is a multinational executive or manager in a foreign firm that is connected to a company in the US. The petition to the USCIS to classify a foreign national as eligible for an EB-1C employment-based immigrant visa will have to come from the US employer.
Here are some of the specific requirements that the US employer and the immigrant will need to satisfy:
- The petitioning company must have been in existence in the US for at least a year and must have a qualifying connection with the foreign firm where the multinational executive or manager immigrant is presently connected (this qualifying connection between the two firms can be like a parent company and a branch, a subsidiary or an affiliate).
- The immigrant, as a multinational executive, should prove that he/she: directly manages a major component, function, or group within the firm; creates company goals and policies; has extensive decision-making authority in the company; and, receives general supervision only from top executives, stockholders, or the board of directors.
- As a multinational manager, the immigrant must prove that he/she: has direct managerial control over one of the company’s departments, organizations, components or functions; is authorized to fire, hire and make decisions that will affect company personnel; has control and supervision over the work of other supervisors, manager, professional employees; and directs a department’s day-to-day operations, functions and activities.
Despite the seeming assurance of being qualified for a First Preference Category visa, this visa category still requires more than a handful of legal documents that need to be satisfied. And when it comes to the possible further growth of US businesses where the participation of extraordinarily talented foreign nationals are warranted, no law firm would advise a petitioning employer to see to his/her own business concerns since much is at stake. Rather, US companies (as well as individuals), according to the website of the AmLaw Group, deserves nothing less than fast and professional solutions to all their business-related immigration concerns.
The chance of being granted a First Preference Category visa (and eventually a green card) can either remain to be just that – a chance, or it can be actualize.