Permanent Visa or "Green Card"
There are several methods in which an individual can obtain a ‘green card’ (LPR status) in the United States.
Who is Eligible?
The majority of these methods require the foreign national to have a U.S. employer willing to act as a “sponsor” in offering a full-time, “permanent” job offer. However, there remain several categories open to individuals whose work is deemed to be in the US National Interest, those with Extraordinary Abilities, or those willing to make a substantial Investment in the United States that can proceed without such a job offer.
About the Process:
Depending on which method is elected, timeframes can vary greatly. An important consideration is also that allocation of employment-based “green cards” is also dependent on the country of birth of the applicant. Some categories thus develop backlogs which can be extensive for nationals of certain countries (most often India and China). Therefore, it is very critical to have a skilled immigration attorney examine your specific situation and provide a comprehensive analysis of the options available. The immigration attorney can then advise you on a realistic timeline and a fair statement of costs for each option, and guide you through the process of applying. Along the way, a skilled immigration attorney can answer important questions or concerns regarding family members, help avoid any interruptions to travel or employment, and ensure that everyone is aware of the guideposts along the way.
The most common employment immigration visa categories for applicants who have an employer to sponsor their green card:
Labor Certification through PERM (EB2 or EB3)
This process involves an electronic application to the US Department of Labor. This application verifies that the employer has conducted a series of recruitment measures to ascertain whether there are minimally qualified US workers that could do the job. If you elect this process, our law office will work with the employer to ensure we understand the position and the foreign national’s qualifications fully, draft the necessary advertisements, arrange placement of the advertisements, answer any questions to assist the company review applicants, and electronically file the application with the US Department of Labor.
Application for classification as an Outstanding Researcher (EB1B)
This process involves a detailed review of both the petitioning company’s accomplishments, as well as the foreign national. If you elect this process, we will work with the foreign national to ensure that we have a comprehensive understanding of their work history, and accomplishments including their publications, prizes and awards, memberships, review work, and citations. We will analyze this against the regulatory criteria and case law in this field and draft a comprehensive brief to be filed with US Immigration outlining how the qualifications are satisfied.
Priority Worker / Multinational Manager or Executive (EB1C)
An employee of a multinational company who was employed for at least one year during the last three years outside the US by an affiliate company, and whose work both in the US and overseas can be considered "managerial" or "executive" in nature, may qualify for this streamlined green card category. If this category is selected, we will work with the employer and foreign national to analyze the qualifications of the category and the facts of the case, and draft a comprehensive and persuasive brief to be filed with the US Immigration to show how the foreign national merits this classification.
For individuals who do not have an employer to sponsor their green card, two options include:
Application for a National Interest Waiver (EB2)
The National Interest Job Offer Waiver permits a qualified applicant to self-sponsor for a green card, without an employer. This is available to applicants with either an advanced degree, or its equivalent. The term “national interest” has been defined broadly and can encompass work in many fields and many types of benefits. If you elect this process, we will work to ensure that we have a comprehensive understanding of your work history and accomplishments including publications, prizes and awards, memberships, review work, and citations. We will also spend a significant amount of time discussing the current and potential benefits of your work so that we can draft a comprehensive brief outlining why your work is in the US National Interest and you merit a waiver. Please note that a 2016 case for the first time in more than 15 years has recently expanded the category and its permissible beneficiaries. We are excited and remain confident to file cases under this new framework.
Application for classification as an alien of Extraordinary Ability (EB1A)
Foreign nationals whose accomplishments and reputation place them in the top 5% of their field, can apply under this category, which does not require an employer. If you elect this process, we will work to ensure that we have a comprehensive understanding of your work history and accomplishments including publications, prizes and awards, memberships, review work, press, and citations. If you do not have a major internationally recognized award, then the category allows for a list of alternative criteria which can prove the applicant’s merit. Perhaps most significantly, this category requires you to obtain letters from a broad array of professional colleagues which will affirm that it is their opinion that your work places you in the top 5% of your field. Thus, a major part of our work on such cases will be to brainstorm with you the best writers and what elements of your case they are able and willing to highlight in their letters. We will guide these writers through the letter writing process, and draft a comprehensive and persuasive brief to be filed with the US Immigration as to your merit for this classification.
Take the Next Step:
Boston immigration lawyer Adrienne J. Vaughan realizes that selecting and obtaining the best immigrant visa status is an extremely complex process that involves weighing many individualized factors. It is also a very discretionary process in which the immigration attorney’s experience with similar cases is crucial.
Attorney Adrienne J. Vaughan has over fifteen years analyzing individual qualifications to select the best green card category with the highest chances of success. We realize that your time and money invested in the process are both valuable and limited. In light of this, we anticipate that you will have numerous questions along the way and welcome you to ask them all so that you feel confident in the process. No individual is too small or company too large to merit our undivided attention to your particular immigrant visa situation.
Call or email us for a no obligation phone discussion about your matter.