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Employment Based

Employment Based>

There are various ways to get a green card. You can be sponsored by a family member who is already a citizen, or you can invest in a business or project. Another common way is to get an employment-based green card with support from your employer. These visas allow people from other countries to work in the U.S. permanently if they meet the right job qualifications.

The Immigration and Nationality Act sets a minimum of 140,000 employment-based immigrant visas annually, categorized into five preference groups. These visas may require a labor certification from the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL), and the submission of a petition to the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services within the Department of Homeland Security (USCIS).


Employment First Preference (EB-1)

The Priority Workers category receives 28.6% of the yearly worldwide limit. All Priority Workers must be beneficiaries of an approved Form I-140, Immigrant Petition for Foreign Worker, filed with USCIS.

This preference has three sub-groups:

EB1-A: Extraordinary Ability Immigrant Visa Petition

This visa is tailored for foreign nationals showcasing extraordinary abilities in various fields such as sciences, arts, education, business, or athletics. Unlike other preference categories, applicants for EB1-A can self-petition without requiring a prospective employer. However, they must demonstrate their intention to work in the U.S. within their field and contribute significantly to the country. Proof of sustained national or international recognition with recognized achievements is essential.

EB1-B: Outstanding Professors and Researchers

To be eligible, applicants must exhibit international recognition for outstanding achievements in a specific academic field and possess a minimum of three years of teaching or research experience in that area. They must be entering the United States to pursue tenure, a tenure track teaching position, or comparable research role at a university or higher education institution. Additionally, a job offer from a university, institution of higher learning, or a relevant private employer department, division, or institute is required.

EB1-C: Multinational Manager or Executive Immigrant Visa

This visa, commonly known as the Multinational Manager or Executive Immigrant Visa, permits individuals to work in a managerial or executive capacity at a branch, parent, affiliate, or subsidiary of their current foreign employer. To qualify, the applicant must have been employed by the same employer abroad continuously for at least one year within the three years preceding the petition (or the most recent lawful nonimmigrant admission if already working for the U.S. petitioning employer).

Employment Second Preference (EB-2)

Professionals with Advanced Degrees or Exceptional Ability in the Arts, Sciences, or Business are allocated 28.6% of the yearly worldwide limit, in addition to any unused Employment First Preference visas.

Applicants must possess an approved labor certification from the Department of Labor (DOL), Schedule A designation or you can apply for a self petition National Interest Waiver (NIW). Applicants may seek exemption from the job offer and labor certification if it's in the national interest. In such cases, the applicant may file Form I-140 along with evidence of national interest.

Within the EB-2 category, there are two subgroups:

Professionals with Advanced Degrees: This includes individuals with advanced degrees beyond a bachelor's degree, or those with a bachelor's degree plus a minimum of five years of progressive experience in their profession.

Individuals with Exceptional Ability: These are individuals who possess expertise significantly above the norm in their field, whether it be arts, sciences, or business.

Furthermore, individuals may consider applying for the EB-2 National Interest Waiver (NIW). The NIW presents a unique opportunity where applicants can bypass the PERM Labor Certification and job offer prerequisites, enabling self-petitioning. However, applicants must demonstrate the substantial benefit of their work to the nation, warranting the USCIS to waive the PERM and job offer criteria.

Engaging an EB-2 visa attorney can assist in determining the most suitable subgroup for individual circumstances.

EB-2 National Interest Waiver (NIW)

Additionally, applicants may pursue the EB-2 National Interest Waiver (NIW). This waiver allows for bypassing the PERM Labor Certification and job offer requirements, enabling self-petitioning. However, applicants must demonstrate that their work significantly benefits the nation, justifying the USCIS waiving the PERM and job offer requirements.

Employment-Based Green Card Labor Certification (PERM)

A very important step in almost every employment-based green card process is to have an employer obtain a PERM Labor Certification on your behalf. This is a procedure that involves having your employer go through an extensive recruitment process in order to ensure that you are not displacing any qualified U.S. workers.

Your employer will first need to file to have the prevailing wage for your position determined according to the location and others that are similarly employed. Once that determination is received, your employer will need to run three kinds of advertisements:

•    Job order: this must run for at least thirty days.
•    Newspaper ads: this must be in a high-circulation paper on two separate Sundays.
If professional position, three additional advertisements posted in areas like the internet, radio, or college campuses.

After the ads have run their course, thirty days must be given for potential applicants to respond. During this time, your employer must consider the qualified candidates and give reasons for rejecting each one.

If no candidates take the position, then your employer must file an ETA-9089 form with the Department of Labor. During this step, there is always the possibility that your employer will be audited either randomly or through targeted process.

Once the ETA-9089 is approved and the PERM Labor Certification received, you can begin the petitioning process for your employment-based green card.

Keep in mind that the PERM is not required for EB-1 green cards as well as the EB-2 National Interest Waiver.

Employment Third Preference (EB-3)

The Employment Third Preference (EB-3) category is designed for individuals falling under the classifications of Skilled Workers, Professionals Holding Baccalaureate Degrees, and Other Workers.

These categories are allotted 28.6% of the annual worldwide limit, along with any unused visas from the Employment First and Second Preference categories.

All EB-3 applicants must have an approved I-140 petition filed by their prospective employer. Additionally, these applicants must either possess a labor certification, a Schedule-A designation, or demonstrate eligibility for one of the shortage occupations listed in the Labor Market Information Pilot Program.

Within the EB-3 category, there are three distinct subgroups:

Professionalsare persons whose job requires at least a U.S. baccalaureate or foreign equivalent degree and are a member of the professions.

Skilled workers: are persons whose jobs require a minimum of 2 years training or experience, not of a temporary or seasonal nature. The skilled worker must meet the educational, training, or experience requirements of the job opportunity. Relevant post-secondary education may be considered as training.

Other workers: subcategory is for persons performing unskilled labor requiring less than 2 years training or experience, not of a temporary or seasonal nature.

Employment Fourth Preference (EB-4)

Special Immigrants are allocated 7.1% of the yearly worldwide limit. To qualify, applicants must be the beneficiary of an approved I-360, Petition for Special Immigrant, with the exception of overseas employees of the U.S. Government, who must utilize Form DS-1884. Certain spouses and children may accompany or follow-to-join the principal special immigrant.

The category of special immigrants encompasses various types of individuals as stipulated under immigration law:

•    Employees in the U.S. employed by the International Broadcasting Bureau of the Broadcasting Board of Governors or a grantee of such organization.
•    Ministers of Religion.
•    Specific Employees or Former Employees of the U.S. Government Abroad.
•    Employees of the Mission in Hong Kong.
•    Former Employees of the Panama Canal Company or Canal Zone Government.
•    Former Employees of the U.S. Government in the Panama Canal Zone.
•    Certain Individuals who served as interpreters or translators for the United States armed forces or under Chief of Mission authority in Iraq or Afghanistan.

Additionally, certain provisions are made for:

•    Foreign Medical Graduates (Adjustments Only).
•    Retired International Organization employees.
•    Spouses of deceased International Organization Employees.
•    Juvenile Court Dependents (without family member derivatives).
•    Aliens recruited outside of the United States who have served or are enlisted to serve in the U.S. Armed Forces.
•    Retired NATO-6 civilians.
•    Surviving spouses of deceased NATO-6 civilian employees.
•    Aliens who were beneficiaries of petitions or labor certification applications filed before Sept. 11, 2001, rendered void due to the events of that day.

Employment Fifth Preference (EB-5)

The Employment Creation Investors category is allocated 7.1 percent of the yearly worldwide limit. All applicants are required to submit a Form I-526, Immigrant Petition by Alien Entrepreneur to USCIS.

To be eligible, an individual must make an investment ranging between U.S. $500,000 and $1,000,000, depending on the employment rate in the specific geographical area. This investment must be made in a commercial enterprise within the United States that generates a minimum of 10 new full-time jobs for U.S. citizens, permanent resident aliens, or other lawful immigrants, excluding the investor and their immediate family members.

Schedule A Designation

DOL delegates authority to USCIS for approving labor certifications in designated occupations. Schedule A, Group I includes physical therapists and nurses. Group II comprises aliens with exceptional abilities in sciences and arts. Employers submit Form ETA-9089 to USCIS alongside the I-140 petition.


Intending immigrants must obtain an approved immigrant visa petition from USCIS. Upon labor certification approval, employers file Form I-140 for the relevant employment-based preference category. EB-5 investors file Form I-526.

Premium Processing

Petitions typically take over six months to process with USCIS. Premium processing expedites processing 15 to 45 business days for an additional fee, for employment-based petitions. Premium processing doesn't affect approval chances or other processing steps.

Numerical Limitations

Annual green card availability per category per country is limited. Oversubscribed categories create backlogs, and USCIS processes petitions chronologically. Priority dates are crucial, and some categories may entail years-long wait times. Refer to the monthly visa bulletin for updates.

How Canero Fadul Immigration Attorneys Can Help

Navigating the various avenues to attain legal permanent residency through an employment-based green card can be complex. Identifying the appropriate path, assessing eligibility, and successfully navigating the steps involved can pose significant challenges without the guidance of a skilled green card attorney.

Canero Fadul Immigration, headquartered in Miami, Florida, stands as a premier immigration firm specializing in employment, family, and humanitarian immigration matters. With a collective experience exceeding 25 years, our firm has earned a reputation for profound knowledge and steadfast dedication to immigration issues.

Our immigration lawyers at Canero Fadul Immigration possess extensive experience in facilitating the immigration process for eligible individuals seeking to establish residency in the United States through employment. We handle every aspect of the process, from aligning qualifications with the appropriate green card category to petition filing and proficiently addressing any obstacles that may arise.

Backed by a team of professionals, we are committed to achieving favorable outcomes for our clients, providing expert guidance and compassionate support throughout their immigration journey. If you're ready to embark on the path to obtaining a green card, we invite you to schedule a consultation with one of our immigration attorneys at Canero Fadul Immigration by completing a brief form.

Want to Start Your Employment Based Visa Book a Consult with Us!

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