One of the most sought after visa is known as the H-1B visa which an employment based visa. An employment-based visa allows you to work in the United States and eventually allows you to become a permanent resident. This allows about 140 thousand people a year to get a green card.
There are 5 categories
- EB-1: This is for 3 types of people and it normally has no back logs which means that waiting period for this type of visa is usually shorter than the EB-2 category. The EB-1 visa is for three types of people and you qualify if you fit under the listed category.
- People with extraordinary ability the science, art, education, business or athletics which has been demonstrated by sustained national or international acclaim.
- Outstanding researchers and Professors
- Multinational executives and managers
- EB-2: This the second category for people with exceptional abilities or people with advance degrees which means a degree higher than a master’s degree or a person with a bachelors degree and 5 years of work experience. In this category, the process starts with a PERM application also known as Labor certification. This requires advertising and an employer can successfully continue with the green card process through job offer if it is shown that the job offer will not displace American workers.
- National Interest Waivers (NIV): An employer is exempt from the PERM process if it will be contrary to the National Interest of the United States for the employer to go through the PERM process. You or your employer can petition for you for a NIV which allows you to skip the labor department PERM application process.
Requirement for National Interest Waiver:
To be exempt from the PERM process you must show that going through the process will be contrary to national interest. An example would be someone working on a cure for cancer or special weapons for United States who can show that stopping the process and finding someone minimally qualified would be contrary to the nation’s interest. Physicians working in an underserved area can qualify for National interest waiver (NIV). For more on national interest waiver see “Do I qualify for National Interest Waiver?
- EB3: The third preference is for professional and skilled workers. It requires a four year degree or its equivalent. This category has the longest wait time because it includes skill workers and other workers increasing the number of applicants applying for a very limited supply of visas. PERM is a required for this process.
- Special Immigrants EB-4: This category is carved out for a particular group of immigrants known as Special Immigrants. Special immigrants include religious workers, religious ministers, Special Immigrant Juvenile status (SIJS) and few more special groups. For more on SIJS see the article titled “Green Cards for Special Immigrants: Who is a Special Immigrant?” Another article on special immigrant is called “Green Card for Juvenile”.
- EB-5: This category requires a minimum of million dollars in investment in a new commercial enterprise. It also requires the creation or preservation of at least 10 full-time jobs for qualifying U.S. workers within two years of admission of the immigrant investor as a conditional permanent resident. Although the Eb-5 investment requires a million dollar investment, a person can invest 500 thousand dollars investment if location of business is in a place designated as regional center. A regional center is a place involved with the promotion of economic growth, job creation and improved regional productivity. Note that EB-5 investment category is different for the E-2 investor Treaty visa which is limited to only the nationals of treaty countries with which the United States maintains a treaty of commerce and navigation.