Alien of Extraordinary Ability
Introduction To EB-1A Application
EB1-A is a subcategory of Employment-based Green Card 1st preference. Aria Immigration Law Group specializes in EB-1A (Alien of Extraordinary Ability) petitions. This immigrant visa preference is for foreign nationals with extraordinary ability and skill in sciences, arts, education, business, or athletics. Pursuant to federal immigration law, unlike EB-1b and EB-1c, the petitioner is not required to have an employer, but they must be entering to continue to work in their chosen field, and they must substantially benefit prospectively in the U.S. In addition, the petitioner must show that the foreign person sustained national or international acclaim with recognized achievements. This is the requirement that is most difficult to prove. Based on our experience, Aria Immigration Law Group has developed winning strategy of argument to meet this prong of requirement. To win an extraordinary ability case requires extensive documentation and excellent petition skills of the attorney. You can trust Aria Immigration Law Group with your EB1-A case.
Attorneys must possess extraordinary petition skills and be willing to submit extensive evidence or order to be successful with extraordinary ability cases. Our clients can trust Aria Law Group with EB1-A cases.
The employment-based classification EB-1A has many benefits. First, an offer of employment is not a requirement for a non-immigrant in this category as long as the non-immigrant is coming into the U.S. to remain working in the area in which he/she has extraordinary ability. Consequently, self-petition is permissible. Remember, just because self-petition is permissible does not mean you should choose to pursue a DIY petition. Immigration visa petition is a complex procedure and an Aria Law Group attorney is qualified to handle all the difficult legal matters. Aria Law Group has successfully filed numerous EB-1A cases.
No Labor Certification is Required, Self Petition is Allowed
Qualifications of an EB-1A Petitioner
To qualify for an EB1-A visa, the client must demonstrate the following:
Definitions and Evidence of “Extraordinary Ability“ for EB1-A
Immigration Law defines “extraordinary ability“ as a level of expertise indicating the individual is one of a small percentage who have risen to the very top of a particular field in the sciences, arts, education, business, and athletics. The federal law indicates that such a person will have received national and international acclaim. National or international acclaims can be demonstrated by receipt of a major internationally recognized award such as Nobel Prize or the Academy Award. Or,
Alternatively, immigration law requires that the petitioner provides at least three of the following types of evidence:
- Receipt of lesser nationally or internationally recognized prizes or awards for excellence in the field of endeavor.
- Membership in an association that requires outstanding achievement as a condition of membership in the field for which the classification is sought
- Published material about the foreign person or his or her work in professional, trade journals, or major media publications. (These items must include title, date, author, and must be translated into English)
- The foreign person’s participation, on a panel or individually, as a judge of the work of others in the same or a related field
- Evidence of original contributions, usually through publication, of major significance in the foreign national’s fields of science, scholastic, artistic, or athletic
- Authorship of scholarly articles in the field, in professional journals, or other major media (national newspapers, magazines, etc.)
- Display of the foreign national’s work at significant exhibitions
- Performance in a significant role for organizations or establishments that have a distinguished reputation
- Receipt of a higher salary or remuneration than is usual in the field
- Commercial success in the performing arts as shown by box office receipts or sales records, cassette, compact disk, or video sales, or
- Other comparable evidence if the above types of evidence do not readily apply to the foreign national’s occupations
The meanings of these evidentiary criteria are ambiguous. Cases in front of AAO (Administrative Appeal Office) have indicated that not every criterion applies to every foreign beneficiary.
Attorneys are sometimes confused about the evidence types that apply to the particular case. Aria Law Group will correctly determine which evidence is relevant to the petitioner’s application based on the attorney’s experience, education, and legal training.
EB1-A Applicant Must be Top of the Field of Expertise
Regarding the requirement that the non-resident must represent a “small percentage who has risen to the very top” of the field of study, AAO rulings signify that the relevant field of study must be distinct before a determination can be made as to whether the non-resident has extraordinary ability in that area.
Aria Law Group advises that if the field is clearly distinct, the firm will probably claim that the non-resident has “risen to the very top” of the field of study.
In Aria Vatankhah’s blog article, “Are You at the Top of the Field of Expertise?” Mr. Vatankhah clarified that clients should utilize the non-resident’s past working experience and education to define the field of expertise.
Nevertheless, it is not always the case that the more clearly the field is defined, the better the chances of getting approved. AAO rulings have indicated that the judging officers become suspicious in cases where the field of expertise is so narrowly defined that “rising to the top of the endeavor” is unimportant. Please contact Aria Law Group to find out more about defining the field of expertise.
Are You at the Top of the Field of Expertise?
Aria Law Group attorneys advise that the most effective method to determine if the non-resident is “one of the small percentage who have risen to the very top” of his or her area of study is to provide documentation that sets a benchmark for comparison between the non-resident and their colleagues that are deemed typical or average in the area of study. For instance, if the non-resident is in a discipline in which the printing of academic pieces is normal, Aria Law Group will show documentation that the petitioner’s pieces were seen in the most prominent periodicals in the area of study, were the topic of peer discussion in these periodicals, or were extensively cited in other academic journals.
Approved Cases Comparison
Even though USCIS tries to discourage using comparisons between EB1-A successful petitions in the same area of expertise, Aria Law Group attorneys have determined that both AAO and the court system regularly stated that agency regulations established the governing guideline for determining extraordinary skills as being a comparison with peers in the area of expertise. As a result, USCIS treatment of colleagues in the area of study with similar credentials is extremely significant to an extraordinary ability petition.
USCIS Adjudicators Two-Part Approach
In 2010, the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals reexamined the denial of a EB-1A petition, the Kazarian case. The AAO concluded that the Kazarian case utilized a two-part approach: Part One: Counting the Evidence Types Submitted; Part Two: Determination of Final Merits. Click this link to see a detailed summary of this notable case provided by Aria Law Group. Two-Part Approach (the Kazarian case) for EB-1A (Alien of Extraordinary Ability) petition
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