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Eve Guillergan PLLC
Call now: (212)-279-9020
875 Avenue of the Americas, Suite 17-03; New York, NY 10001; Fax: (212)-202-5064

EB-1 Priority Workers

The EB-1 classification is open to individuals with extraordinary ability in the arts, sciences, education, business or athletics; to outstanding professors or researchers; or to managers and executives soon to be transferred to the U.S.  This is called the Priority Worker category.

What we do for you

We will start our relationship with an in-depth discussion of your options. In some cases, individuals will have more than one option to obtain U.S. permanent residency. We will let you know what those options are and the various processing times based on our experience so that you can make an informed judgment about your case.

In general, it is best to discuss permanent residency options with an immigration attorney early on in your career in the U.S. You do not wish to wait until the last minute and run out of time on your nonimmigrant visa. Also, if you review the governmental processing times, you will see that may take years for you to get your green card (depending on the route you choose and where you file). Even if you do not hire an attorney to file a green card case for you right now, you can benefit by speaking to one as you can educate yourself on U.S. immigration laws and your options. By starting early, you can also prepare the documents necessary for you to obtain permanent residency in the future.

Once you retain us for the EB1 alien of extraordinary ability or outstanding researcher category, we will go over the documents that you will need to collect for us. We will discuss the strengths of your case and how to combat any weaknesses. In addition, we will provide you with sample letters of recommendation relevant to your field and review the letters you obtain for your case. We will also prepare a petition for you that will explain to the government how to you qualify as an alien of extraordinary ability or outstanding researcher. Our petitions are generally lengthy (about 10-30 pages). After we prepare your petition and file it, we will keep track of it while it is pending with the government. We currently have a 95% success rate on these cases.

The Process

Individuals with extraordinary ability may self-petition, meaning that an employer does not necessarily need to sponsor the immigrant visa petition.  In the other two EB-1 categories (outstanding researcher and multinational manager) the petitions should be filed by a sponsoring employer.
Form I-140, the Petition for Alien Worker, needs to be completed and submitted to the CIS Regional Service Center that has jurisdiction over the location of your employment.  In this I-140 petition, you or your employer will be asking the immigration services to classify in the visa category that is being requested.  All required supporting documents must be submitted with the I-140.  Prior approval of a labor certification is not required for any of the EB-1 categories.

Once the I-140 is filed, the USCIS will issue you a receipt notice containing your unique case number.  With this number, you should be able to check the status of your case online with the USCIS website.  The immigration service will generally not outright deny your case, rather, they will provide you with an opportunity to respond by issuing a request for evidence.  Once the request for evidence is submitted, they will make a final decision on the case.  If the case is denied, then you may file an appeal with the Administrative Appeals Unit. 


Aliens with extraordinary ability are defined by immigration law as individuals with "extraordinary ability in the sciences, arts, education, business, or athletics which has been demonstrated by sustained national or international acclaim and whose achievements have been recognized in the field through extensive documentation."  In order to apply, you need to show that you are in one of the categories (science, arts, education, business or athletics).  These categories are defined broadly and it is up to the petitioner to make the argument that your work falls under one of these categories. 

A person must show that he has sustained national or international acclaim.  National acclaim generally means that you are famous in one country and international acclaim would therefore mean that you are famous in more than one country. 

The immigration laws give an example of an individual who wins a Nobel Prize as evidence of being extraordinary.  However, very few individuals in the world would qualify so there is an alternative standard.

In order to prove that you are extraordinary, you need to show that you meet at least three of the following types of evidence:
  1. Receipt of lesser recognized prizes or awards for excellence.
  2. Membership in associations in your area that demands outstanding achievement of their members.
  3. Published material about you in major publications.
  4. Proof that you have judged others' works.
  5. Proof that you have made original contributions to your field.
  6. Proof that you have published articles about your field in major publications.
  7. Proof that your work has been displayed in exhibitions or showcases.
  8. High status in a distinguished organization.
  9. Proof that you receive high payments for your work, in relation to your peers.
  10. Proof of commercial success in the performing arts.
Submitting evidence in three of the above ten areas is really just the threshold requirement for this category, however. USCIS will look at the strength of the evidence submitted to determine if you have reached the very top of your field. USCIS will be comparing you to your peers, not to the population in general, in order to determine if you are truly extraordinary.
As an outstanding professor or researcher , you need to have a specialty in an academic field.  You also need to show that you are internationally recognized by your peers.  You should be coming to the U.S. to accept a tenure track or permanent position, and you should have had at least three years experience in your academic field (experience while obtaining a graduate degree would count so long as your graduate work required outstanding work).
Evidence of your status should include at least two of the following:
  1. Receipt of major prizes or awards for outstanding achievement.
  2. Membership in associations in your area which demand outstanding achievement of their members.
  3. Published material about you in major publications.
  4. Proof that you have judged others' works.
  5. Proof that you have made original contributions to your field.
  6. Proof that you have published articles about your field in major publications.
If your employer is not a university or college, but a private institution/corporation, the employer must be able to show that it employs at least three other full-time researchers, and that it has achieved accomplishments in an academic field.
To be eligible for EB-1 classification as a manager or executive transferred to the U.S., you must have been employed outside the U.S. as a manager or executive for at least one out of the past three years for a company affiliated with the U.S. company that is filing the I-140 petition. The U.S. petitioning company must have been doing business in the U.S. for at least one year.