EB-2 Permanent Visa: Exceptional Ability

EB-2: ADVANCED DEGREE, EXCEPTIONAL ABILITY AND NATIONAL INTEREST WAIVERS

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Who can file and What to File

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Any United States employer may file a petition on Form I–140 for classification of an alien under section 203(b)(2) of the Act as an alien who is a member of the professions holding an advanced degree or an alien of exceptional ability in the sciences, arts, or business.

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Self-Petition Available: If an alien is claiming exceptional ability in the sciences, arts, or business and is seeking an exemption from the requirement of a job offer in the United States pursuant to section 203(b)(2)(B) of the Act, then the alien, or anyone in the alien’s behalf, may be the petitioner.

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    • Advanced degree means any United States academic or professional degree or a foreign equivalent degree above that of baccalaureate. A United States baccalaureate degree or a foreign equivalent degree followed by at least five years of progressive experience in the specialty shall be considered the equivalent of a master’s degree. If a doctoral degree is customarily required by the specialty, the alien must have a United States doctorate or a foreign equivalent degree.

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  • Exceptional ability in the sciences, arts, or business means a degree of expertise significantly above that ordinarily encountered in the sciences, arts, or business.

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  • Profession means one of the occupations listed in section 101(a)(32) of the Act, as well as any occupation for which a United States baccalaureate degree or its foreign equivalent is the minimum requirement for entry into the occupation.

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Mandatory Initial Evidence

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(i) To show that the alien is a professional holding an advanced degree, present:

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(A) An official academic record showing that the alien has a United States advanced degree or a foreign equivalent degree; or

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(B) An official academic record showing that the alien has a United States baccalaureate degree or a foreign equivalent degree, and evidence in the form of letters from current or former employer(s) showing that the alien has at least five years of progressive post-baccalaureate experience in the specialty.

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(ii) To show that the alien is an alien of exceptional ability in the sciences, arts, or business, present at least three of the following:

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(A) An official academic record showing that the alien has a degree, diploma, certificate, or similar award from a college, university, school, or other institution of learning relating to the area of exceptional ability;

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(B) Evidence in the form of letter(s) from current or former employer(s) showing that the alien has at least ten years of full-time experience in the occupation for which he or she is being sought.

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(C) A license to practice the profession or certification for a particular profession or occupation.

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(D) Evidence that the alien has commanded a salary, or other remuneration for services, which demonstrates exceptional ability.

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(E) Evidence of membership in professional associations; or

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(F) Evidence of recognition for achievements and significant contributions to the industry or field by peers, governmental entities, or professional or business organizations.

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(iii) If the above standards do not readily apply to the beneficiary’s occupation, the petitioner may submit omparable evidence to establish the beneficiary’s eligibility.

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Labor certification and Job Offer Generally Required

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(i) General. Every petition under this classification must be accompanied by an individual labor certification from the Department of Labor, by an application for Schedule A designation (if applicable), or by documentation to establish that the alien qualifies for one of the shortage occupations in the Department of Labor’s Labor Market Information Pilot Program.

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Qualification under the Labor Market Information Pilot Program

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To apply for Schedule A designation or to establish that the alien’s occupation is within the Labor Market Information Program, a fully executed uncertified Form ETA–750 in duplicate must accompany the petition. The job offer portion of the individual labor certification, Schedule A application, or Pilot Program application must demonstrate that the job requires a professional holding an advanced degree or the equivalent or an alien of exceptional ability.

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NATIONAL INTEREST WAIVER

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(ii)Exemption From Job Offer and Labor Certification.

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The director may exempt the requirement of a job offer and a labor certification, for aliens of exceptional ability in the sciences, arts, or business if exemption would be in the national interest. To apply for the exemption, the petitioner must submit Form ETA–750B, Statement of Qualifications of Alien, in duplicate, as well as evidence to support the claim that such exemption would be in the national interest.

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