The National Interest Waiver (NIW) is an immigration Visa classification designed to foreign nationals of exceptional ability in the sciences, arts, or business, and advanced degreed professionals such as: Masters, P.h.D, and so forth. P.h.D students may qualify as well.
The National Interest Waiver is a procedure created to bypass the Labor Certification process, as administered by the Department of Labor and which ordinarily is a duty in obtaining permanent residence through the EB-2 employment-based green card category.
The main requirement is a three-part test. You must meet all three parts to qualify for a national interest waiver:
• What you do must be of “substantial intrinsic merit“;
• The benefits of your work must be “national in scope” (as opposed to being purely “local”); and,
• You must establish that your past record of achievement demonstrates that you can benefit the national interest to a “substantially greater degree than would an available U.S. worker having the same minimum qualifications.”
Benefits of the National Interest Waiver:
– an alien do not require a Labor Certification (PERM)
– an alien can file his own green card petition with the USCIS on his behalf.
You must be a person with exceptional ability in the sciences, arts, or business, or an advanced degree holder.
To be classified as a person with exceptional ability, you must provide documented proof of at least three of the following:
– An official academic record showing the alien has a degree, diploma, certificate or similar award from a college, university, school or other institution of learning relating to the area of exceptional ability;
– Letters documenting at least ten years of full-time experience;
– license to practice the profession or certification for a particular profession or occupation;
– Evidence that you command a salary or other remuneration for services which demonstrates exceptional ability;
– Membership in professional associations;
– Documents that prove recognition for achievements and significant contributions to the industry or field by peers, government entities, professional or business organizations.
To obtain a national interest waiver, you must file a Form I-140 petition, Form ETA 750B, and supporting documents directly with the appropriate Immigration Service Center. You may also file your permanent residency application at the same time as your I-140 Petition, and receive work and travel authorization.