EB-1 – Outstanding Researcher

Outstanding Researchers & Professors

For an outstanding researcher or professor, a university, public or private research organization, or private company can sponsor an individual for permanent residence. In order to qualify for this category, the foreign researcher or professor must be recognized as outstanding internationally (not just nationally) in a specific field or academic area of study. Furthermore, the foreign researcher or professor must have at least three years of research or teaching experience in the specific field or academic area of study.

For outstanding professors the U.S. sponsoring university must be offering a tenure or tenure track position to the individual. The foreign professor must satisfy at least two of the following criteria to demonstrate that he or she is recognized as outstanding internationally:

  • Recipient of major awards or prizes for outstanding achievement; or
  • Association membership that requires outstanding achievement; or
  • Articles in recognized publications written by others about the foreign professor’s outstanding work/contributions to the field; or
  • Authorship of articles in recognized publications, or scholarly books in the field; or
  • Participation as a judge reviewing the work of others in the field; or
  • Documentation of original research.

For outstanding researchers the U.S. sponsoring organization must be offering a research position that is unlimited in duration and that there are at least three other individuals employed with the organization who are conducting research (typically who also hold PhDs). Additionally at least two of the following criteria must be provided to support that the individual is internationally recognized as outstanding:

  • Recipient of major awards or prizes for outstanding achievement; or
  • Association membership that requires outstanding achievement; or
  • Articles in recognized publications written by others about the foreign researcher’s outstanding work/contributions to the field; or
  • Authorship of articles in recognized publications, or scholarly books in the field; or
  • Participation as a judge reviewing the work of others in the field; or
  • Documentation of original scientific research.

This category is very stringent and it is not uncommon for the government to request for additional documentation from the sponsoring organization or the foreign national.

How to Apply

Form I-140 is filed with the appropriate USCIS processing center with all supporting documentation. Note that for this category expedited and concurrent processing may be available at the USCIS. Please feel free to contact our office to discuss the pros and cons to filing for premium processing and/or concurrent filing of the I-485 (Application for Adjustment of Status).

Dependents

Spouses and unmarried children under the age of 21 years will derive permanent resident status with the principal.

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