EB-1 (Green Card)

EB-1 Overview

Eb-1 is the first employment based preference that allows foreign nationals to work in the United States. It also paves way for a green card. Every year 40,000 visas are allotted for the category. In addition, any unused visas in the fourth (EB-4) and fifth (EB-5) employment based categories are added to the total number of available visas for the EB-1. One of the nicest features of this visa is that it does not require labor certification. There are three groups within this category. All of them are discussed below.

1. Extraordinary Ability

The first group includes people with extraordinary ability in the sciences, arts, education, business or athletics. Extraordinary ability is typically demonstrated through national and international acclaim of the person applying for the EB-1 visa. It requires heavy documentation of achievements. People seeking admission under the EB-1 visa must prove that his or her admission will substantially benefit the United States. The substantial benefit requires evidence that an alien will continue to work in his or her field in the United States.

The easiest way to establish extraordinary ability is also ironically the hardest. A Nobel Prize, an Academy Award or other internationally recognized awards will suffice. However, these awards are rare.

When a major award is not available, an alien must submit evidence to satisfy three or more of the following:

  • Lesser nationally or internationally recognized prizes or awards for excellence in the field of endeavor
  • Membership in associations that require outstanding achievements of their members as judged by recognized national or international experts
  • Published material in professional or major trade publications or major media about you which relates to your work in the field
  • Participation on a panel or individually as a judge of the work of others in the same or in an allied field of specialization
  • Original scientific, scholarly or business contributions that are of major significance
  • Scholarly articles in professional journals or other major media
  • Work has been displayed at artistic exhibitions or showcases
  • Played a leading or critical role for an organization with a distinguished reputation
  • Command a high salary or other remuneration for your services in comparison to others in your field
  • Commercial successes in the performing arts?


Outstanding Professors and Researchers

Outstanding professors and researchers that have achieved significant accomplishments in their respective fields may be eligible for a green card. Unlike “extraordinary ability” group discussed above, outstanding professors and researchers are required to have a qualifying offer of employment from a prospective employer.

To qualify as an outstanding professor or researcher under the EB-1 visa one must:

  • Show international recognition for your outstanding achievements in a particular academic field
  • Have at least 3 years experience in teaching or research in that academic field
  • Be entering the United States to pursue tenure or tenure track teaching or comparable research position at a university or other institution of higher education


The first requirement listed above is outstanding achievements in the academic field which means a body of specialized knowledge offered at an accredited university or institution of higher education. Outstanding achievements can be established by at least two of the following elements:

  • Receipt of major prizes or awards for outstanding achievement
  • Membership in associations that require their members to demonstrate outstanding achievement
  • Published material in professional publications written by others about the alien’s work in the academic field
  • Participation, either on a panel or individually, as a judge of the work of others in the same or allied academic field
  • Original scientific or scholarly research contributions in the field
  • Authorship of scholarly books

Managers And Business Executives

The final group in the EB-1 preference is for business executives and managers. This visa allows foreign companies to transfer their top level managers and executives to immigrate to the United States as permanent residents. To qualify for the EB-1 visa as a business executive or manager, the alien must have been employed for at least one year in the preceding three years for the overseas company in a managerial or executive capacity. He or she must be coming to the United States to work in a managerial or executive capacity as well. The U.S. employer must file the petition on the prospective manager’s or executive’s behalf. The petition must be accompanied by supporting documentation.