To obtain an EB-1A green card, you must have extraordinary ability in the sciences, the arts, education, business or athletics.
EB-1A is a highly preferred category because you can sponsor yourself and the processing is much faster than other categories:
Generally, people who qualify for O-1 and J-1 visas (used for temporary stay) also qualify for EB-1A (permanent residence).
To get a green card under EB-1A, you must prove:
To prove that you are extraordinary, you must have either won a top international award (like the Nobel prize) or meet 3 out of this list of 10 criteria:
Once the individual criteria are met, the USCIS also looks at the petition as a whole to decide if you can be considered extraordinary at your job.
While the list looks daunting, our team has helped many clients document their accomplishments to successfully receive green cards through EB-1A.
EB-1A petitions can only be filed with the USCIS in the United States. These are the 2 steps in the process:
To process these petitions, the USCIS often consults with experts in your industry, to decide whether your work is truly extraordinary.
(See this link for explanation of I-485, consular processing and the concept of “priority date”)
Proving that our client is at the level of a Nobel prize winner is a tough ask. Only 7 Nobel prizes are given out each year. All other applicants need to prove that they are extraordinary by meeting 3 of the 10 criteria listed above.
While many of our clients are scientists already established in their fields, we also help researchers who are just starting their professional journey. The question that will get new reserachers’ green card approved is – How do you prove that your client, who is a newly minted researcher, is doing extraordinary work, if they have only been at their job for a few years? Young scientists usually do not have hundreds of research publications. Neither do they have lots of colleagues who have cited their work in their own research papers. Besides, when the research has not completed, how do you know what its benefits will be?
EB-1As are also filed for non-research positions. One common case is for someone in an emerging field. For example, Biotechnology and Information Technology are industries that have existed less than 50 years. There is no one determinative association or international award for these fields. Sometimes, the work being performed may be a mixture of 2 different fields of study. To get the green card approved in such situations, a thorough understanding of the legal criteria and the researcher’s work is needed.
Even when the field is established, and the applicant has achieved world-wide fame, they may be entering the US to perform a different job. This is particularly true of high-ranking athletes who retire and decide to coach instead of to compete.
For established businesspeople and entrepreneurs, we need to prove that their companies are doing extraordinarily and that their own contribution is absolutely necessary to their companies’ success. Not every company is a Google or Amazon.
Most times, our clients work as part of teams that are creating technologies or doing research. Not every client is the project lead or the principal author on the patent. Some clients started work right after their Masters and do not have a Ph.Ds in their fields.
There are a lot of questions that need to be answered to file a successful EB-1A petition.
Creating an approvable EB-1A petition is always exciting.
Located in the Northeastern United States, we are in the vicinity of world-class universities and financial, fin-tech and biotech industries. Our services include helping recent graduates and businesspeople qualify for EB-1A green cards.
While some clients walk in with extremely strong cases, most cases require real work. We take a tiered approach to most EB-1A cases. Our attorneys screen your work track and what you wish to accomplish to determine if an EB-1A is the best choice for you. This includes a deep dive into your industry, its current standards, your research project and your contributions to it. For businesspeople, we explore your industry, your products, and your role in your company thoroughly.
Our in-depth review helps us write a winning case for you. In cases where you do not meet the requirements, we help you identify actions that you can take to further build your profile so you will qualify for an EB-1A green card case later. Our attorneys offer practical suggestions backed by a pragmatic understanding of the USCIS officer’s mindset, the reason behind the creation of this EB-1A category, combined with a deep knowledge of business and research.
We believe it only takes an involved attorney with a patient ear to get your EB-1A green card approved. It is our pleasure to help you on this journey!