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The EB2 NIW visa is intended for professionals in various fields who possess exceptional ability and hold an advanced degree, and is commonly sought by experts in science, technology, engineering, math, and business, among other fields. It is designed to attract highly skilled individuals to contribute to the U.S. economy and advance the nation's interests. The EB2 NIW visa is highly sought after due to its potential to provide a direct path to permanent residency in the United States.

Eligibility for EB2 NIW Visa

To be eligible for the EB2 NIW visa, you must demonstrate that you possess exceptional ability in your field or hold an advanced degree and that your work is in the national interest of the United States. The specific requirements for the EB2 NIW visa include the following:

  • Exceptional Ability

    You must demonstrate exceptional ability in the sciences, arts, or business. There are multiple ways that can be demonstrated, including a professional license, letters from employers documenting at least 10 years of experience, or a record of achievements in your field, such as published articles, awards, or patents. You must also show that your work will benefit the U.S. economy, culture, or society.

  • Advanced Degree

    You must hold an advanced degree (master's or higher) in your field of expertise. Alternatively, you can demonstrate that you have a bachelor's degree and at least five years of experience in your field.

  • National Interest

    You must demonstrate that your work is in the national interest of the United States. It means that your work has substantial merit and national importance and that the benefits of your work outweigh the national interest in requiring a labor certification.

You may be eligible for the EB2 NIW visa if you meet these requirements. However, it's important to note that meeting the eligibility requirements does not guarantee that your application will be approved.

How to Apply for the EB2 NIW Visa

The EB2 NIW visa is an employment-based visa that allows individuals with exceptional abilities or advanced degrees to obtain permanent residency in the United States. NIW stands for "National Interest Waiver," which means that individuals who can demonstrate that their work is in the national interest of the United States may be eligible for this visa without having to go through the labor certification process.

  • File Form I-140.

    The first step is to file Form I-140, the Immigrant Petition for Alien Worker. This form requires you to provide evidence of your exceptional ability or advanced degree and proof that your work is in the national interest of the United States.

  • Submit Supporting Documentation.

    You must submit various supporting documents along with Form I-140, such as academic degrees, publications, patents, and letters of recommendation. You will also need to provide evidence that your work is in the national interest of the United States.

  • Pay Filing Fees.

    You must pay the required filing fees when you submit your application. The fees for Form I-140 vary depending on whether you are filing as an employee or an employer.

  • Wait for a Decision.

    After you submit your application, USCIS will review your application and supporting documentation. If USCIS approves your application, you will receive a notice of approval. If it denies your application, you will receive a notice of denial.

  • Apply for Adjustment of Status or Consular Processing.

    If your application is approved, you must apply for adjustment of status if you are already in the United States or go through consular processing outside the United States.

It's important to note that the EB2 NIW visa application process can be complex and time-consuming. It may be helpful to work with an experienced immigration attorney who can guide you through the process and help you prepare a strong application.

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Tips for a Successful EB2 NIW Visa Application

  • Start Early.

    The EB2 NIW visa application process can take a long time, so starting as early as possible is important. It will give you more time to gather the necessary documentation and allow for any unexpected delays.

  • Consult with an Experienced Immigration Attorney.

    An experienced immigration attorney can guide you through the application process, help you prepare a strong application, and provide valuable advice and support.

  • Provide Clear and Concise Evidence.

    The success of your application will depend largely on the strength of your evidence. Make sure to provide clear and concise evidence that demonstrates your exceptional ability or advanced degree, as well as the national interest of the United States.

  • Highlight Your Achievements.

    Be sure to highlight your achievements and contributions in your field, including publications, patents, awards, and other relevant accomplishments.

  • Provide Supporting Letters.

    Letters of recommendation from experts in your field can be a powerful tool in demonstrating your exceptional ability and the national interest of your work. Make sure to choose recommenders who are well-respected in your field and can speak to the impact of your work.

  • Be Prepared for a Request for Evidence. (RFE).

    It is not uncommon for USCIS to issue an RFE requesting additional evidence to support your application. Be prepared to respond to an RFE promptly and thoroughly, and work with your immigration attorney to provide the strongest possible response.

Key Terms for EB2 NIW

  • Exceptional Ability: A term used by USCIS to describe an individual who has exceptional ability in the sciences, arts, or business. It can include individuals who have received significant recognition for their work or contributed significantly to their field.
  • Advanced Degree: A degree beyond a bachelor's degree, such as a master's or doctorate. This is a requirement for eligibility for the EB2 NIW visa.
  • National Interest Waiver (NIW): A waiver that allows individuals to bypass the traditional labor certification process for employment-based visas, including the EB2 visa. This waiver is granted to individuals who can demonstrate that their work is in the national interest of the United States.
  • Priority Date: The date the individual's labor certification application is filed. This data determines the individual's place in line for a visa.
  • Petition for Alien Worker: The formal application submitted to USCIS by an employer or individual seeking an EB2 NIW visa. The petition includes various supporting documentation, such as evidence of exceptional ability, advanced degree, and national interest.

Final Thoughts on EB2 NIW

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Asked on Feb 14, 2024

Where do I find an experienced EB-2 NIW visa lawyer?

Canadian professional couple moving to USA. MD and business coach.

Brian W.

Answered Feb 20, 2024

I can help you with that. Email me at or visit my website for a free case evaluation

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