Examples of Successful National Interest Waivers

A foreign national can legally enter the United States and apply for permanent residency in various ways. One of those methods is via the Employment-Based Second Preference visa, better known as the EB-2. However, the applicant must have a job offer from a qualified US-based employer willing to sponsor them for this visa — unless the individual has the skills, education, and assets to obtain a National Interest Waiver (NIW). What is an NIW, and what are some examples of successfully obtaining one? Read on to find out.

Clarifying the EB-2 National Interest Waiver

The most common avenue for foreign nationals to enter the US and obtain employment is the H-1B visa. The EB-2 is another option, though. By petitioning for this category, potential beneficiaries can enter the US and begin the path of a green card, but they must have a US employer sponsoring them who has been approved by the Department of Labor (DOL).

The approval process from the DOL can take weeks or months, and then the sponsor uses that certification to continue the application process for the EB-2 visa. Once that’s completed, the beneficiary can start the petitioning process for a green card. Overall, this journey can take years and, in some cases, decades, as petitioners must wait until a green card becomes available in their specific category.

Much of that wait time is eliminated if the petitioner can qualify for a National Interest Waiver, which allows them to skip the requirement of having a DOL-approved job sponsor.

Qualifying for an EB-2 NIW

Regardless of your talents and the urgency of your national interest abilities, you must qualify for an EB-2 before you can apply for an NIW. Consider it the door that you’ll need to get through before you can enter the NIW room.

The EB-2 visa is for those in professions with advanced degrees or foreign equivalents or people with exceptional ability in their field and the evidence to prove it. Provided you meet the qualifications of an EB-2, you can move on to the next step and attempt to demonstrate that your endeavor has the components to be of national interest to the United States government. 

Of necessity, this means you’ll need to have significant documentation to prove your qualifications and showcase the evidence that your work is of crucial importance to the US. You only get one chance before you must start over, so it’s wise to hire a skilled immigration lawyer with a successful track record of obtaining NIWs for their clients, such as Visa2US.

The Factors That Make Up a Successful NIW

 Instead of waiting on a sponsor, NIW applicants can self-petition for the EB-2. In your petition, you must include enough evidence to convince USCIS of these three factors:

●     Your proposed endeavor is of national importance and has substantial merit to the US,

●     You are in a position where you can advance said endeavor, and

●     Your endeavor is significant enough that it would be beneficial for the US to waive the otherwise essential requirements of a job offer and labor certification.

Top NIW Examples

Convincing the government of any country that you are important to them is a daunting task. Qualifying for an NIW in the US means you must be in a field that the country deems as important to its overall well-being. 

There are various professions that could qualify, and if yours is not listed here, that doesn’t mean you are automatically unable to petition for an NIW. Yet, there are some fields that are inherently of interest to the US government, including:

●     Computer programmers and designers

●     Researchers and scientists

●     Artists (this category encompasses musicians, singers, and actors, as well)

●     Healthcare professionals (physicians, dentists, therapists, nurses, veterinarians, pharmacists)

●     Engineers, architects, and urban planners

●     Designers

●     Entrepreneurs, managers, and upper-level businesspersons

●     Professors

●     Economists

●     Lawyers

Whether your application is successful or not only partially hinges on your profession. More importantly, the documentation used to set up your case before USCIS is the critical aspect.

What’s Next?

Do you think you have what it takes to qualify for a National Interest Waiver? Contact Visa2US today to find out if your situation has “substantial merit.” We’ll work with you to develop a watertight case to present to USCIS, showing them that your proposed endeavor is vital to the US national interest. Our skilled immigration experts know how to put together the necessary evidence proving that you are worth setting aside the traditional job offer requirements for a National Interest Waiver. Reach out today to get started!

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H-1B Visa

H-1B Visa

H-1B visa is used by businesses and organizations in the United States to employ foreign nationals with the preferred qualifications, knowledge, and expertise in a role.

I-485 Adjustment of Status

I-485 Adjustment of Status

Submit a form I-485 application to apply for lawful permanent resident status.

National Interest Waiver (NIW)

National Interest Waiver (NIW)

An applicant must either hold an advanced degree or have an exceptional ability in their field that would substantially benefit the U.S. to be qualified.