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First Employment Preference: EB1 Visa

The EB1 Visa is the first employment based preference allowing priority workers to gain permanent residence in America. There are 3 different classes of priority workers able to migrate under this category, all of which must possess distinguishing characteristics to qualify.

To qualify as a priority worker, you must be:

EB1 Visa

Priority Worker Priority WorkerRequirements
Aliens of Extraordinary Ability Priority WorkerTo qualify as a person of extraordinary ability:
  • Be able to show sustained national or international acclaim for their field of expertise;
  • Be seeking to enter America for the purpose of continuing work in their field of expertise; and
  • Be able to show a high level of achievement in their field by the receipt of a major internationally recognised award (e.g. Nobel Prize or Academy Award); or
  • Be able to provide evidence of 3 of the following:

    Receipt of a lesser national or international prize in their field;

    Membership of associations requiring outstanding achievements of their members;

    Published material in professional journals, major trade publications, or the major media about the applicant's accomplishments in their field;

    Participated in a panel or individually as a judge of the work of others in the same or allied field;

    Original scientific, scholarly or artistic contributions of major significance in their field;

    Authorship of scholarly articles in their field;

    Display of work at artistic exhibitions in more than one country;

    Performance in a lead, staring, or critical role for organisations or establishments with distinguished reputations;

    Commanding a high salary or other significantly high remuneration for services in their field; or

    Commercial success in the performing arts.
Outstanding Professor or Researcher Priority WorkerTo qualify as an outstanding professor or researcher:
  • Have received international acclaim in a particular academic field;
  • Have at least 3 years experience in teaching or research in the field;
  • Be seeking to enter America for a teaching or research position for an indefinite term (can be for a university or other educational institution or for a private employer so long as the employer has at least 3 other persons employed in full-time research); and
  • Be able to provide evidence of 2 of the following:

    Receipt of major international prizes or awards for outstanding achievement in their field;

    Membership of academic associations requiring outstanding achievement;

    Published materials and professional publications written by others about the applicant's work;

    Participation on a panel or as an individual judging others work in the field;

    Original scientific/scholarly research contribution; or

    Authorship of scholarly books or journals.
Multinational Executive or Manager Priority WorkerTo qualify as a multinational executive or manager:
  • Have been employed for at least 1 year in the 3 years preceding the application in America by the same multinational firm or business entity;
  • Intend to continue their employment with the employer in the same managerial or executive capacity;
  • The employer (company) must have been in business in America for at least 1 year prior to filing the petition; and
  • To qualify as a manager, you must:

    Primarily manage the organisation, or department, subdivision, function or component of the organisation;

    Primarily supervise and control the work of other supervisory, professional, or managerial employees, or manages an essential function within the organisation, or a department or subdivision of the organisation;

    Has the authority to hire and fire or recommend staff for promotion; if no other employees are supervised, functions at a senior level within the organisational hierarchy or with respect to the function managed; and

    Exercises discretion over the daily operations of which the employee has authority; or
  • To qualify as an executive, you must:

    Direct the management of the organisation or a major component or function;

    Establish the goals and policies of the organisation, component, or function

    Exercise wide latitude in discretionary decision-making; and

    Receive only general supervision or direction from higher level executives, the board of directors or stockholders of the organisation.

The EB1 Visa has very similar requirements to the L1 Visa for multinational executives and managers, and as such temporary workers in America on the L1 Visa may decide to apply for permanent status through this preference visa category.

Qualified priority workers do not need to have sponsorship from their employer as they are able to petition the Department of Homeland Security Service Center themselves. This also means they do not require a labor certification from the Department of Labor as a prerequisite to obtaining the EB1 Visa.