5 Key Things You Need to Know About The EB-2 Visa

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(Newswire.net — May 15, 2017) — Created by the Immigration Act of 1990, EB-2 is the second of five immigrant visa preference categories for U.S.-employment based permanent residency. If you are considering applying for EB-2 visa, here are 5 key things that you should know:

1. There are Multiple Categories

There are three EB-2 occupational categories: Advanced Degree, Exceptional Ability, and National Interest Waiver. It is critically important to ensure that you apply for the appropriate category, and meet all eligibility requirements (discussed below). 

2. There are Various Eligibility Requirements 

As noted, each of the occupational categories has its own set of eligibility requirements. They are as follows:

  • Advanced Degree: the job you are seeking must require an advanced degree, and you must possess such a degree or its equivalent (the USCIS defines this as a B.A. degree, along with at least five years of progressive work experience in the field). You must also submit documentation in your application, which can be an official academic record, or if applicable, formal letters from employers verifying your work experience in this speciality occupation.
  • Exceptional Ability: you must be able to demonstrate that you possess exceptional ability in business, the arts, or the sciences (the USCIS defines exceptional ability as “a degree of expertise significantly above that ordinarily encountered”). You must also meet at least three of the criteria listed in the next section.
  • National Interest Waiver: you must demonstrate that you have exceptional ability, and that it is in the national interest to let you work permanently in the country. This benefit may include (but is not limited to) improving the economy, health care, quality of education, or working conditions and wages for U.S. workers. You must also meet at least three of the criteria listed in the next section.

3. There is Additional Eligibility Criteria

If you are eligible to apply for the Exceptional Ability of National Interest Waiver category, you must also meet at least three of the following criteria:

  • Provide an official academic record that verifies you have a suitable level of education related to your area of specialization/exceptional ability. 
  • Provide letters that document at least 10 years of full time work in your area of specialization/exceptional ability. 
  • Possess (if applicable) an active license in good standing to practice your profession, or a certification for your profession. 
  • Submit proof that you have earned a salary (or received some other form of appropriate compensation) based on work in your area of specialization/exceptional ability. 
  • Provide evidence that you are a member in good standing in all requisite professional organizations or associations. 
  • Provide evidence that your achievements have been recognized by your peers (e.g. government, business organizations, etc.). 

4. Additional Labor Certification Requirements

If you are applying for either the Advanced Degree or Exceptional Ability categories, then you also need to submit an approved individual labor certification from the Department of Labor. If you are applying for the National Interest Waiver, you do not necessarily need labour certification. This can significantly speed-up the processing time.

5. Visas for Family Members

If you qualify for any category of EB-2 visa, then your spouse and any children under 21 years of age may be admitted to the U.S. (E-21 and E-22 immigrant status).

A Final Word

Applying for the EB-2 visa is complex, and any errors or omissions in your application will lead to delays, and may also reduce the chances of approval. Ensure that you work with a qualified EB-2 attorney to get the step-by-step guidance you need.