Visa Solutions for High-Achievement Individuals

This visa category is ideal for professionals with extraordinary ability in certain fields, extraordinary achievement in film industry, recognized academic specialization, or advanced degree in the professional fields to work or immigrate to the United State. O-1A Visa and O-1B Visa are non-immigrant visas, while EB-1A Visa, EB-1B and EB-2 NIW grants permanent residence to qualifying beneficiaries. VISA2US has specialized in offering consultations and petitioning visas for a variety of high-achievement individuals based on different professional backgrounds.

Introduction

The E-1 Visa is a non-immigrant visa that enables a trader of a treaty country, which enters into bilateral treaties of commerce and navigation with the United States, and their qualifying employees to enter into the United States to engage in substantial international trade, including but not limited to trade in goods, services, qualifying activities and technology. The amount or number of trade would be reviewed on a case-by-case basis since no specific criteria is set while the trade volume is highly emphasized when reviewing the E-1 Visa application. The E-1 Derivative Visa may cover the E-1 holder’s immediate family as well. With respect to the validity, the E-1 Visa may be issued for an initial stay of up to two years and additionally granted for an extension of up to two years each as long as the E-1 holder maintains the qualification. The E-1 Visa holder must intend to depart the United States or further change visa status upon the termination or expiration of qualification status.

The E-2 Visa allows an investor of a treaty country, which has form a treaty with the United States, to enter and work in the United States for operating and setting up the business. Compared to the treaty countries listed under the E-1 Visa requirements, more countries are qualified for the E-2 Visa. Although no minimum amount is specified by law, the substantial investment requirement varies from business to business. With the same nationality as the investor and holding either a managerial/executive/supervisory position or an essential role requires specialized and unique expertise for the business, non-investor employees of the business are eligible for the E-2 Visa as well. The derivatives of the E-2 holder may be granted the E-2 Derivative Visa, allowing them to live and work with employment authorization in the United States according to a series of requirements. Unless otherwise instructed in certain reciprocity agreements between countries, the E-2 Visa may be granted with a validity period of up to five years and continuously renewed with two-year extensions. Upon completion of the business, the E-2 holder must depart the United States or further change visa status.

The EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program Visa grants eligible international investor and his/her immediate family to obtain lawful permanent residence in the United States by making a minimum investment of either $500,000 in a targeted employment area in regional center or $1,000,000 in a new commercial enterprise owned by the investor, and by which directly or indirectly creating or retaining at least ten full-time jobs for American workers within two years following the investment. Unlike the E-1 Visa and E-2 Visa, an annual cap on the number of the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program Visa is imposed (10,000 EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program Visas are issued each year, among which no less than 3,000 shall be reserved for investors in targeted rural or high-unemployment area and another 3,000 shall be set aside for investors in regional centers), resulting in its threatening viability.

Differences among E1, E2 and EB5

Non-Immigrant Visa Immigrant Visa
O-1A / O-1B EB-1A / EB-1B EB-2 NIW
Applicant Qualification

O-1A

  1. Individual with an extraordinary ability in the sciences, education, business and athletics areas
  2. Individual has an offer of employment in field of his extraordinary ability in the U.S.
  3. Individual’s extraordinary ability has been nationally or internationally acclaimed and recognized, which can be either a major international award or meet at least 3 of following criteria:
    • Receipt of nationally or internationally recognized awards
    • Professional association membership
    • Published material
    • Original contributions to specialized fields
    • Authorship in publications or media
    • Salary or remuneration reflecting exceptional ability
    • Judgment experience
    • Employment in a critical capacity for prestigious organization and establishment

EB-1A

  1. Individual with an extraordinary ability in the sciences, arts, education, business, or athletics areas
  2. Individual’s extraordinary ability has been nationally or internationally acclaimed and recognized, which can be either a major international award or meet at least 3 of following criteria:
    • Receipt of nationally or internationally recognized awards
    • Professional association membership
    • Published material
    • Original contributions to specialized fields
    • Work being displayed
    • Performance of a critical role in organizations
    • Commercial successes in the performing arts
    • Salary or remuneration reflecting exceptional ability
    • Judgment experience
    • Authorship in publications or media
  3. Continue working in the specialized area
  4. Individual’s admission to the U.S. will substantially benefit the U.S.
  1. Individual with an advanced degree, or extraordinary ability which meets at least 3 of following criteria:
    • Official academic record relating to exceptional ability
    • Proof of at least 10 years work experience
    • License or certification of profession
    • Salary or remuneration reflecting exceptional ability
    • Professional association membership
    • Recognition for achievements and contributions
    • Other comparable evidence of eligibility
  2. Proposed endeavor must be of substantial merit and national importance
  3. Individual is well-positioned to advance the proposed endeavor
  4. Beneficial to the U.S. to waive the required job offer or labor certification

O-1B

  1. Individuals with an extraordinary ability in the arts or extraordinary achievement in motion picture or television industry
  2. Individual has an offer of employment in field of his extraordinary ability/achievement in the U.S.
  3. Individual’s extraordinary ability or achievement has been nationally or internationally acclaimed and recognized, which can be either receipt or nomination of a major international or national award or meet at least 3 of following criteria:
    • Performance of a critical role in events or productions
    • Recognized achievement in publications
    • Performance of a critical role for organizations
    • Commercial successes in the performing arts
    • Recognized achievement by organizations or experts
    • Salary or remuneration reflecting exceptional ability

EB-1B

  1. Researchers and professors with internationally recognized achievement in academic area, which must meet at least 2 of following criteria:
    • Receipt of major prizes or awards
    • Professional association membership
    • Published materials
    • Judgment experience
    • Original contributions to specialized field
    • Authorship in scholarly publications
  2. At least 3 years of teaching or research experience in academic area
  3. A job offer of a permanent research position, or a tenured or tenure-track teaching position
Self-Petition No
  1. EB-1A: Yes
  2. EB-1B: No
Yes
Sponsor Requirement No

(Noted that a direct employer or an agent or manager, who represents the beneficiary’s interests and obtain works for them, maybe eligible for filing O-1 Visa petition.)

  1. EB-1A: No
  2. EB-1B: Yes
    • The sponsor must employ at least 3 full-time research employees
    • The sponsor must be recognized for research accomplishments
    • The sponsor has the ability to pay the proffered salary
No
Prior Work Experience No
  1. EB-1A: No
  2. EB-1B: Yes, at least 3 years of academic teaching or research experience prior to the petition
Yes, at least 5 years of post-graduate progressive work experience in a related field, provided the individual holds only a bachelor degree
Processing Time 1 Week to 3 Months; 15 Days for Premium Processing Service (Additional fee $1,410) 9 to 14 Months; 15 Days for Premium Processing Service (Additional fee $1,410) 9 to 16 Months
Dependents Spouse and Children under 21 Spouse and Children under 21; Children over 21 may be protected pursuant to CSPA after application filed Spouse and Children under 21; Children over 21 may be protected pursuant to CSPA after application filed
Dependents’ Work Permit No Yes, Spouse and Children under 21 Yes, Spouse and Children under 21
Validity Up to 3 years. Indefinite extension of up to 1 years each is available. 10-year valid Green Card 10-year valid Green Card
Individual has to stay in the U.S. No No, but subject to permanent resident travel limitation No, but subject to permanent resident travel limitation
Intent to Depart Yes, non-immigrant visa;
(Noted that as a dual intent visa, O-1 holders may file for Permanent Residence)
No No
Eligibility to Permanent Residence Yes, as a dual intent visa, O-1 holders may file for Permanent Residence Yes Yes