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The employment-based first preference (EB-1 Visa)

The employment-based first preference (EB-1) Visa allows foreign nationals with extraordinary abilities, ‘outstanding’ researchers and professors, managers and executives of multinational companies to obtain a US Green Card. Essentially, this pathway is meant for people at the top of their field to further develop and contribute their expertise within USA as permanent residents.
  •  WHY
  • Directly attain the EB-1 Green Card (permanent residence)
  • Unrestricted access to the job market, business opportunities and investment options is USA
  • The applicant’s spouses and children can be admitted to USA respectively under E-14 and E-15 immigrant status
  • People with extraordinary ability do not need a U.S. employer to submit the petition on their behalf
  • No labor certification required, thus reducing time period between application and outcome
  • Shorter processing time compared to many other visas, option of priority processing

Eb-1 Visa Categories

There are three categories under which aspirants can apply for the EB-1 American business visa:

  • Extraordinary Ability – for people who have demonstrated extraordinary ability in the arts, athletics, business, education or sciences.
  • Outstanding Professors and Researchers – for recognized teachers and researchers in the field of academics.
  • Multinational Executives or Managers – for experienced foreign nationals working in MNCs who are being sponsored by a U.S. employer to work in an executive or managerial capacity.

Eb-1 Visa Application Process

The EB-1 US business visa application procedure depends on which category the prospective immigrant falls under:

Extraordinary Ability

Qualified candidates can file an application for themselves by submitting Form I-140 (Petition for Alien Worker) to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).

Outstanding Professors and Researchers / Multinational Executives or Managers

  • The U.S. employer will have to submit Form I-140 on behalf of the professor/researcher.
  • The employer must demonstrate that they are capable of continuing to pay the wage offered on the date of filing the form, by providing an annual report, audited financial statement or federal income tax return.

Eb-1 Visa Eligibility Criteria

The EB-1 US business visa requirements for eligibility vary according the applicant’s category:

Extraordinary Ability

  • Candidates must demonstrate extraordinary ability in the arts, athletics, business, education or sciences based on sustained international or national acclaim.
  • The applicant should plan to continue working in their field in USA.

Outstanding Professors and Researchers

  • Candidates must demonstrate that their outstanding achievements in a specific academic field are internationally recognized.
  • The applicant should possess three or more years work experience in research or teaching within the academic field.
  • The applicant should be entering USA to pursue tenure/tenure track teaching or to hold a comparable research position in an eligible university, higher education institution, or under an eligible private employer.

Multinational Executives or Managers

  • The applicant must have at least one year of work experience as a manger/executive within the three years preceding either submission of the petition or the most recent lawful admission as a nonimmigrant (if the applicant is already working for the petitioning U.S. employer).
  • The U.S. employer should have been in business since at least one year, be affiliated to the organization that the applicant worked for outside USA, and plan to employ the applicant as an executive or manager.

Eb-1 Visa Documentation Requriements

The documentation requirements for the EB-1 United States business visa are different for each category:

Extraordinary Ability

  • Candidates must showcase evidence that they intend to continue working in their field of expertise after moving to USA.
  • Candidates must provide evidence of a significant one-time accomplishment (Academy award, Pulitzer prize, Olympic medal, Nobel prize, etc.); OR
  • Provide evidence of any three of the following:
  1. Lesser internationally/nationally recognized awards or prizes of excellence;
  2. Membership of associations within the field that only admit members with outstanding achievements;
  3. Original and highly significant contributions to the field;
  4. Material published about the applicant in major trade/professional publications or other prominent media outlets;
  5. The applicant has been asked to judge the work of other people, on a panel or individually;
  6. Scholarly articles written by the applicant published in major trade/professional publications or other prominent media outlets;
  7. Display of the applicant’s work at showcases or artistic exhibitions;
  8. Performance of a crucial or leading role in distinguished organizations;
  9. High salary or other form of remuneration compared to others within the same field;
  10. Commercial success in performing arts.

If these criteria do not apply, comparable evidence can be submitted.

Outstanding Professors and Researchers

  • The applicant must demonstrate a job offer from a U.S. employer
  • The employer must showcase documented achievements and employ three or more full-time researchers
  • The applicant must provide evidence of any two of the following:
  1. Major awards or prizes received for outstanding achievements;
  2. Membership of associations within the field that only admit members with outstanding achievements;
  3. Material written by other people about the applicant’s work within the academic field, published in professional publications;
  4. Participation in judging work done by others within the same academic field or an allied academic field, individually or as part of a panel of judges;
  5. Original scholarly research or scientific contribution to the field;
  6. Scholarly articles (published in scholarly journals circulated internationally) or books in the field, written by the applicant.

If these criteria do not apply, comparable evidence can be submitted.

Multinational Executives or Managers

  • The applicant must provide evidence of the required work experience.
  • The petitioning U.S. employer must provide evidence of:
  1. Being in business for at least one year as a lawful entity
  2. A qualifying relationship with the applicant’s foreign employer
  3. Intention to employ the applicant at an executive or managerial position

Eb-1 Visa Processing Time And Fees

The EB-1A US business visa processing time can vary depending on the caseload of the USCIS. As of May 2020, the minimum processing time for Form I-140 was 4 to 6 months.

The US business visa cost for EB-1A applicants includes the filing fee for Form I-140 ($700) and biometric fee ($85).

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