A green card holder is someone who's been granted authorization to live and work in the United States permanently. In order to achieve permanent residency through a green card, there are two main avenues that most people choose to pursue: family-based and employment-based immigration. You may either have a family member who petitions for you to immigrate to the United States or you may have a U.S.-based employer sponsor you for a green card. However, for those who have neither of these two options, there are exceptions that allow you to self-petition for a green card without sponsorship.
There are two main immigrant visa categories that may allow you to self-sponsor your green card: an EB-1A green card and EB-2 National Interest Waiver Visa. This article focuses on the EB-1A Visa, otherwise known as an “extraordinary ability” visa, and how you can pursue this path to citizenship.
What is an EB-1A Visa for Extraordinary Abilities?
The EB-1A is an immigrant visa classification reserved for those with extraordinary achievements in their professions. It encompasses a wide variety of fields of human endeavor, including science, arts, business, education, and athletics. To qualify for an EB-1A visa, you need to show that you possess aptitude and skill in your field that's far and above the average person. Likewise, you must demonstrate that what you bring to the table will significantly benefit U.S. interests and that you will continue to work in your field after being granted the visa.
To pursue an EB-1A visa, you're required to show proof of your accomplishments and contributions. You may do this a few different ways, including via reference letters from peers in your field and documentary evidence demonstrating your best-in-class achievements. For instance, you may want to show any receipts of prizes or awards, memberships in elite associations, published materials, authorship of scholarly articles, proof of a high salary relative to others in your field, commercial success, or other evidence.
It's important to note that each case is unique, and attaining an EB-1A visa is difficult to reach. Many talented young applicants aren't quite ready to file in this category. For the best chance at positioning yourself for success with the EB-1A visa, it's crucial that you contact experienced immigration lawyers as soon as possible. Even if you don't qualify, you may have other options besides the EB-1A visa. Contact us at Orbit Law today.
Why Might You Pursue an EB-1A Visa?
You may be thinking to yourself, “Why do I even need to pursue an EB-1A visa if it's so difficult to attain?” For starters, many individuals don't have a family member who's a U.S. citizen or Legal Permanent Resident. Additionally, standard employment-based immigration is harder to attain than you might realize. For example, many employers have limits as to who they can sponsor, and they may only provide sponsorship for those who will be employed in a position for more than a specified length of time. Likewise, some temporary positions won't be appropriate for employer-sponsored categories.
If you don't qualify for the standard family-based or employment-based green cards and are also worried about your chances of qualifying for an EB-1A visa for extraordinary abilities, it's essential to know that your opportunities and qualifications for these categories will only improve as your career moves forward. Your résumé will likely strengthen as you begin to progress to higher levels, at which point you may eventually reach your goal of permanent U.S. residency.
Contact an Experienced Seattle Immigration Attorney
It's important that you approach the self-petitioning application meticulously. The chance to dodge the labor certification and job offer requirements will subject your petition to higher scrutiny, which is why you need an immigration lawyer who can help you process your application. At Orbit Law, our experienced lawyers understand the ins and outs of the EB-1A visa application process and have experience helping others in your shoes reach the pinnacle. We're dedicated to ensuring that your application is framed for the best chances of success.
At Orbit Law, our lawyers have far-reaching knowledge and understanding of United States immigration laws, and we remain committed to helping you work through the EB-1A immigration process. We've assisted many clients in their quest to obtain permanent U.S. residence, and we're excited to stand by your side throughout the process. To schedule a consultation, give us a call at (206) 312-8086 or complete our online contact form today.