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An alien may qualify for a green card if he or she has “extraordinary ability” in the sciences, arts, education, business, or athletics. This ability must be demonstrated by “sustained national or international acclaim” and the achievements must be recognized in the field through extensive documentation. There are several advantages to applying for a green card through extraordinary ability: the applicant can apply without first applying for labor certification; the applicant does not need an offer of employment (he or she can self-petition) and the processing time is much quicker than other categories.

The alien must be at the very top of his or her field of endeavor; for example, he or she must be the recipient of a major internationally recognized award such as a Nobel Prize. For those applicants who have NOT managed to win a Nobel Prize, there are other possible criteria. The worker must submit extensive evidence that he or she meets at least three of the following criteria

1. Receipt of lesser nationally or internationally recognized prizes or awards for excellence
2. Membership in associations in the field that demand outstanding achievement of their members
3. Published material about the alien in professional or major trade publications or other major media
4. Evidence that the alien has judged the work of others, either individually or on a panel
5. Evidence of the alien’s original scientific, scholarly, artistic, athletic, or business-related contributions of major significance to the field
6. Evidence of the alien’s authorship of scholarly articles in professional or major trade publications or other major media
7. Evidence that the alien’s work has been displayed at artistic exhibitions or showcases
8. Performance of a leading or critical role in distinguished organizations
9. Evidence that the alien commands a high salary or other significantly high remuneration in relation to others in the field
10. Evidence of commercial successes in the performing arts.

The evidence must demonstrate that the alien’s achievements have been recognized by others as extraordinary. This requires extensive and persuasive documentation. The Woog Law Office has a successful track record helping scientists, researchers, and artists obtain green cards through extraordinary ability (EB-1). We make even the most complex scientific achievements understandable to USCIS and can highlight artists’ unique contributions to society. Satisfied clients include engineers, materials scientists, chemists, pharmaceutical researchers, a bilingual actor, and others. If you want a law firm with extensive EB-1 experience that will candidly assess your case, persuasively document your achievements and offer reasonable rates, contact the Woog Law Office or give us a call.


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