Frequently Asked Questions about EB-1A

Q: What is USCIS?

A: The USCIS, also known as the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services, is a government office charged with handling immigration, citizenship, and residency among people from foreign countries who wish to live in the United States. USCIS deals mainly with employment-based immigration cases, family-based immigration cases, etc.

Q: What is NVC?

A: The NVC, also known as National Visa Centre, is mainly responsible for the issuance of immigrant visas.

Q: What is EB-1?

A: EB-1 is the acronym of Employment-Based First Preference Immigration. It refers to employment-based first-preference. For EB-1 category, USCIS gives 40,000 immigration visas a year. The quota allocated to each country is 7%. That is to say, there are 2800 immigrant visas for every citizen born in mainland China every year.

Q: What is EB-1A?

A: The EB-1A Alien of Extraordinary Ability is a first-preference employment-based petition.

Alien of Extraordinary Ability refer to those who have special talents and great achievements in the fields of art, science, education, commerce and sports.

Q: What documents I need to prepare for EB-1A application?

A: You need to submit I-140 forms, G-28 forms, petition letter, personal statement, recommendation letters and other material related to your achievements.

Q: Who bears the burden of proof in the EB-1A application?

A: In the EB-1A application, the applicant and his lawyer bear the burden of proof. According to Immigration & Nationality Act, the application materials need to meet the criteria of Preponderance of Evidence at least.

Q:If the applicant simultaneously meets the requirements of EB-1A, EB-1B and EB-2 NIW , which one should the applicant choose?

A:If the requirements of EB-1A, EB-1B and EB-2 NIW can be met at the same time, Attorney Gu and his teams recommend that you apply for EB-1A and EB-2 NIW. There are three reasons: Firstly, EB-1B requires an employer’s sponsorship with a corresponding job offer. EB-1A does not require employer’s sponsorship and permanent job offer. The applicants can self-petition for EB-1A. Secondly, if the applicant changes his employer in the process of applying for EB-1B, the application may be terminated. Thirdly, as a large number of Chinese applicants are applying for EB-1A, Attorney Gu predicts that EB-1A will progress Slightly or Remain Unchanged. Therefore, Attorney Gu suggests that applicants can apply for EB-1A and EB-2 NIW at the same time. EB-1B applications require relatively low academic achievement. Generally speaking, the choice should be made according to the specific situation of the applicant. Therefore, in this case, we recommend that you consult a senior immigration lawyer before making a decision.

Q: Can applicants apply for EB-1A and EB-2 NIW at the same time?

A: Yes. Many of our clients have chosen to submit two applications at the same time. Generally, one application is approved earlier than the other. In addition, Attorney Gu predicts that EB-2 NIW will be scheduled faster than EB-1A in the long run.

Q: Can a Ph.D. student or Master students apply for EB-1A?

A: Of course. We have helped some Ph.D. students apply for EB-1A successfully. Generally speaking, it is difficult for Ph.D. students to apply for EB-1. Because it is difficult for PhD students to meet the academic achievement standard required by EB-1A.

Q: Can applicants with a bachelor’s degree or without a university degree apply for EB-1A?

A: Yes. Immigration & Nationality Act does not require academic qualifications. We have successfully applied for EB-1A for many business and art professionals with no or low academic qualifications. Please see our successful case analysis (here is a link).

Q: How many articles should the applicant publish before applying for EB-1A?

A: Immigration & Nationality Act do not provide for the number of published articles. USCIS will treat each specific case differently. The number of published articles is only an optional criterion, not an explicit requirement for EB-1 applications.

Q: What is a letter of recommendation?

A: Recommendation letters are written by experts in the field of the applicants. The letter of recommendation will give a detailed description of the capabilities and contributions of EB-1 applicants. It is worth noting that the best referrals is an independent expert.

Q: Who should the applicant get the letters of recommendation from?

A: Recommendation letters should be written by experts or scholars in relevant professional fields. Usually, our clients invite their former professors, collaborators, employers, or other people they know at industry meetings to write recommendation letters. Of course, you can also find some experts and scholars who are not familiar with the applicants but have a reputation in the industry to write letters of recommendation. Any expert or scholar who has a better understanding of the applicant’s work and field can issue a recommendation letter for the applicant.

Q: Would you provide a template for recommendation letters?

A: Yes. We will search the database according to the applicant’s field and provide a template for recommendation letters.

Q: How many letters of recommendation do I need?

A: USCIS does not specify the number of letters of recommendation, but we recommend that applicants provide 5-7 letters of recommendation.

Q: What should be included in the letter of recommendation?

A: Recommendation letters are an important part of the application and provide the most important evidence support. Recommendation letters generally include the qualifications of the referees, the relationship between the referees and the applicants, how the applicants make outstanding contributions in this field, and how they can bring benefits to the United States.

Q: For me, it’s difficult to get letters of recommendation. Are these letters important?

A: Recommendation is not a necessary condition when applying for EB-1A, but for most EB-1A applicants, recommendation letter is a very important proof of their qualifications and an important guarantee for the application.

Q: My professors are very busy. I don’t like to use their prestige like this. What should I do?

A: Recommendation letters are difficult to write. Normally, professors don’t have time to write in person. Relatively speaking, they prefer to review a prepared letter of recommendation and sign it. Therefore, in this process, we will prepare samples of recommendation letters, and ensure that the final recommendation letter meets the EB-1 application standards in language and content, so as to enhance the persuasion of the recommendation letter.

Q: My friend and I are in the same situation. He recently obtained the approval of the EB-1A application. Can my EB-1A application be approved?

A: Even if the conditions of applicants are basically the same, each application has its own differences. Different applications may lead to different results. Our attorneys can make a free professional assessment of your situation based on your resume.

Q: l haven’t publish any articles in academic journals in my field yet. Can I apply for EB-1A?

A: Yes. Although having a certain number of published articles in journals will increase the chances of approval, there is no requirement that applicants must have published articles . However, for general scholars, teachers and researchers, “published articles in academic journals” is a very easy criterion to meet. In fact, it would be difficult to apply for EB-1A if no articles were published.

Q: If I am not a member of any academic organization in the professional field, can I apply for EB-1A?

A: Yes. Although membership of a well-known academic research organization in a particular field increases the chances of approval, there is no requirement that applicants must be members of an academic organization. In addition, the membership of a general academic organization does not necessarily improve the chances of applying for approval. For example,you can join the American Physical Society, the American Cancer Society, the American Biological Association, and so on by paying $25 to $75 membership dues . However, membership in these organizations will not help you in your application, because participating in these organizations does not require outstanding research achievements.

Q: If my EB-1A application is approved, when can I apply for I-485 or Consular Process?

A: When the EB-1A schedule becomes “Current”, the applicant can submit an I-485 or apply for Consular Process at any time.

Q: In addition to EB-1A, what other categories of employment-based immigration do not require PERM Labor Certification?

A: EB-1B ,NIW and EB-5.

Q: To apply for EB-1A, should I stay in the United States?

A: No. Whether you are in the United States or not, you can apply as long as you meet the requirements of EB-1A.