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Individuals with Extraordinary Ability

Individuals with Extraordinary Ability

An Extraordinary Ability (“EA”) petition is an immigrant visa petition (Form I-140) for individuals who possess extraordinary ability in the arts, business, sciences, education, or sports. It enables foreign nationals who have risen to the “very top” of their field of endeavor to petition, or to have another person or organization petition on their behalf, for lawful permanent residency.  EA beneficiaries qualify under the employment based first preference (EB-1) category and do not require a labor certification.

From Kirsten's interview for the Masters of Immigration Law series on

The USCIS standards to qualify as an EA are extremely high.  The USCIS typically considers:

  • Detailed, laudatory attestation letters from several international experts in the field
  • An international award or awards in recognition of high achievement
  • Publications written by and/or about the beneficiary
  • Original contributions of major significance
  • High salary
  • Serving as the judge of the work of others
  • Critical contributions to organizations of distinguished reputation
  • Membership in associations that require outstanding achievements of their members

**** Additionally, the beneficiary must show national or intentional acclaim in his field.

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