EB-2, National Interest Waiver

The National Interest Waiver (NIW) is an immigration Visa classification designed to foreign nationals of exceptional ability in the sciences, arts, or business, and advanced degreed professionals such as: Masters, P.h.D, and so forth. P.h.D students may qualify as well.

The National Interest Waiver is a procedure created to bypass the Labor Certification process, as administered by the Department of Labor and which ordinarily is a duty in obtaining permanent residence through the EB-2 employment-based  green card category.

The main requirement is a three-part test. You must meet all three parts to qualify for a national interest waiver:

•         What you do must be of “substantial intrinsic merit“;

•         The benefits of your work must be “national in scope” (as opposed to being purely “local”); and,

•         You must establish that your past record of achievement demonstrates that you can benefit the national interest to a “substantially greater degree than would an available U.S. worker having the same minimum qualifications.”

Benefits of the National Interest Waiver:

–         an alien do not require a Labor Certification (PERM)

–         an alien can file his own green card petition with the USCIS on his behalf.

You must be a person with exceptional ability in the sciences, arts, or business, or an advanced degree holder.

To be classified as a person with exceptional ability, you must provide documented proof of at least three of the following:

–         An official academic record showing 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;

–          Letters documenting at least ten years of full-time experience;

–          license to practice the profession or certification for a particular profession or occupation;

–          Evidence that you command a salary or other remuneration for services which demonstrates exceptional ability;

–         Membership in professional associations;

–         Documents that prove recognition for achievements and significant contributions to the industry or field by peers, government entities, professional or business organizations.

To obtain a national interest waiver, you must file a Form I-140 petition, Form ETA 750B, and supporting documents directly with the appropriate Immigration Service Center. You may also file your permanent residency application at the same time as your I-140 Petition, and receive work and travel authorization.