Extraordinary Ability

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Extraordinary Ability

Persons of "extraordinary ability," "outstanding researchers or professors" or people in “national interest” may apply for permanent resident status through the Extraordinary Ability program without applying for a labor certification from the Department of Labor, which can take years to obtain. Extraordinary ability applicants do not need to be sponsored by an employer. However, outstanding researchers must have an employment offer. "National Interest" applicants do not need sponsorship.

Extraordinary ability. This classification is available to a person who is one of the small percentage who has risen to the very top of his/her field in the sciences, arts, or business.

Outstanding researchers and professors. This classification is for researchers or professors who are recognized internationally as outstanding in a specific field and have at least three years of pertinent experience. The sponsoring employer must have at least three other full-time researchers and have achieved documented accomplishments in the field.

Lawler & Lawler has been successful with many extraordinary ability and outstanding researcher cases for scientists, engineers, business people, artists, biotechnologists, and doctors, among others. We have unmatched expertise for representing scientists.

    • Person of extraordinary ability in his/her field
    • Must show clear benefit to the U.S.
    • Should have endorsement letters from past employers

    National Interest Waiver (NIW) green card applications involve proving one is exceptional and will improve the U.S. national interest. The criteria are vague. Here are a few examples of successful NIW applications.

    Professor of medical ethics. This professor has many peer reviewed publications, has spoken at many international medical conferences, and will advise hospitals and teach physicians and medical administrators various aspects of medical ethics.

    Inventor researcher. This Ph.D. developed new cell culturing technology for cancer research which is being used by government medical research labs as well as private industry. He has patents pending and a few peer reviewed publications.

    Entrepreneur. This businessman created a number of successful technology companies in Europe. He came to the U.S. with an E-2 visa to run his technology consulting company. He assists and advises a number of internet technology companies and is a frequent speaker, has won entrepreneurial awards, and has been written about and quoted in numerous articles.

Steps for obtaining Permanent Resident Status (green card) for people with extraordinary achievements, outstanding researchers, and those in the national interest

  • Step 1

    Lawler & Lawler analyzes qualifications of individual, job and employer (which is only necessary for outstanding researchers) to determine eligibility.

  • Step 2

    Gather documents to prove qualifications.

  • Step 3

    Lawler & Lawler assists with the preparation of endorsement letters from industry leaders which are important to document the applicant's achievements and explain how he/she will benefit the United States.

  • Step 4

    Prepare and and send visa petition (Form I-140) to INS with supporting documents. In some cases, Step 7 may be filed with this step.

  • Step 5

    Receipt is issued.

  • Step 6

    Receive decision on petition.

  • Step 7

    File adjustment of status application (I-485) and supporting documents with INS if applicant is in the U.S.

  • Step 8

    Apply for immigrant visa at Consul if employee is overseas. Some people in U.S. may choose this option.

We Are A Law Firm Specializing In United States Visas


Extraordinary Ability

  • National Interest Waiver
  • Outstanding Researchers & Professors