The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has around 140,000 employment-based visas available each year. If a foreign national has the right professional skills, expertise, and education, it is possible to live and work in the United States as a lawful permanent resident.
In this article, you will discover the 5 USCIS categories for permanent work visas.
Employment-Based Visas in the United States – The Basics
Employment-based visas are visas that permit eligible foreign nationals to become lawful permanent residents (green card holders) through employment in the United States.
Most employment-based visas require a labor certification process known as “PERM,” administered by the US Department of Labor (DOL). The purpose is to ensure the applicants will not adversely affect the US job market and the wage/work conditions of employers in similar occupations.
What Are the 5 Categories for the Permanent Work Visas? – Taking a Closer Look
First Preference EB-1 Visa
The first employment-based visa category is the EB-1 visa, a special visa class applied to non-US citizens of extraordinary ability, outstanding professors or researchers, or certain multinational executives or managers.
USCIS has specific requirements for each occupational category. The term “extraordinary ability” is quite broad, encompassing individuals from business, academics, science, arts, and athletics. The EB-1 visa does not require labor certification.
Second Preference EB-2 Visa
The second preference EB-2 visa is available for individuals whose professions require an advanced degree or its equivalent. Eligible foreign nationals of “exceptional ability” can also apply for the EB-2 immigrant status.
One of the subcategories of the EB-2 visa is the National Interest Waiver (NIW) visa, which permits foreign nationals whose employments are in the best interest of the United States to enter the country as lawful permanent residents.
Besides the NIW visa, all the other subcategories require labor certification. NIW visa applicants also have the right to self-petition with USCIS.
Third Preference EB-3 Visa
EB-3 visas apply for eligible foreign nationals who are skilled workers, professionals, or unskilled workers that meet specific categories. Each subcategory within this visa category requires labor certification and a full-time job offer from a US employer.
Consult with an experienced immigration attorney in Florida to identify whether you are eligible for one of the subcategories of the EB-3 third preference visa.
Fourth Presence EB-4 Visa
The EB-4 category is a specialized visa category, encompassing religious workers, employees of US foreign service posts, members of the US armed forces, retired employees of specific international organizations, Afghan or Iraqi translators or interpreters, and other special immigrants. No subcategory within the EB-4 classification requires labor certification.
Fifth Preference EB-5 Visa
The EB-5 program applies to eligible foreign investors willing to invest the required amount of money in a US business enterprise.
Under this program, investors and their families are eligible to apply for lawful permanent residence in the United States if they invest the necessary amount of capital in a US commercial enterprise and create/preserve ten permanent full-time jobs for qualified US workers.
The minimum amount of investment required for standard cases is $1 million. Investors who decide to invest in a TEA (Targeted Employment Area) must invest at least $500,000 to qualify for the program.
Do You Want to Apply for an Employment-Based Visa? – Immediately Seek Legal Guidance at Jurado & Associates, P.A.
Dealing with US immigrant law requires an expert approach. If you want professional legal guidance, call Jurado & Associates, P.A. today at (305) 921-0976 or email [email protected] to schedule a consultation.