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National Interest Waiver for an Entrepreneur

A National Interest Waiver (NIW) is an application that is granted to the rarefied few. An applicant must be able to demonstrate three core criterion: past achievements in an area of substantial intrinsic merit to the United States; that the proposed impact of the work is national in scope, and that waiving the labor certification requirement would benefit the national interest of the United States.


Our client, an employee of a large company in Downtown Seattle was on an H-1B work visa. She had been employed by a startup where she devised a new taxonomy classification system to reduce redundancies in work flow thereby maximizing output which in turn directly related to greater profits for the company which helped them substantially increase the valuation of the company.

She had done some online research regarding National Interest Waivers and was interested in pursuing this course. After a series of meetings with the client to better understand her experience, her expertise with Taxonomy and Linguistics, both of which she used to develop the new system. We then implemented a plan to determine what letters of support to gather and the wording of each letter to highlight her specific skills and achievements.

The success of the application depended on us being able to sufficiently articulate her achievements and the potential for broader application across other types of commercial industries in order to achieve a balance between work-flow and revenue.

We were successful in highlighting her contributions to her company, and also highlighting the business plan of a new company she started (post I-140 approval but pre final decision on the Adjustment of Status) application. We received the approval of the I-140/National Interest Waiver and the Adjustment of Status application in about 6 months from the time of submission.