June 22, 2020 update: President Trump temporarily suspended several new work visas, including H-1B visas. Read the New York Times article.
EB-2 (employment-based, preference 2) visas give legal permanent residence to foreigners with (1) advanced degrees or (2) exceptional abilities. EB-2 visa applicants who demonstrate that their employment would significantly benefit the U.S. may qualify for a “national interest waiver” and would not need a labor certification to immigrate.
In Nevada, common professions that fall within the EB-2 category include UNLV professors, entertainers, solar scientists, accountants, and nurses.
Below our Las Vegas employment visa attorneys answer frequently-asked-questions about EB-2 immigrant visas in Nevada, including application processes, interviews, time frames and fees. Click on a topic to go to that section.
- 1. Do I qualify for an EB-2 visa in Las Vegas, NV?
- 2. How do I prove I am eligible for an EB-2 visa?
- 3. How do I apply for an EB-2 visa?
- 4. How long does it take to get an EB-2 visa?
- 5. How much does it cost to get an EB-2 visa?
- 6. Can my family come with me on an EB-2 visa in Las Vegas, NV?
Also see our articles on EB-1 visas in Las Vegas Nevada, EB-3 visas in Las Vegas Nevada, EB-4 visas in Las Vegas Nevada, and EB-5 visas in Las Vegas Nevada. Also see our article on J-1 exchange-program visas in Nevada.
Employment-based visas in Las Vegas Nevada are divided into five different preference categories. These five categories describe the different levels of preference afforded to different types of foreign workers. The second preference category is for those who are considered professionals that fall under either of the following categories:
- Advanced Degree: To qualify under this classification, the foreign worker must be applying for a job that requires an advanced degree and the foreign worker must possess that degree or its equivalent. For example, a bachelor’s degree plus five years of progressive work experience in the designated field.
- Exceptional Ability: To qualify under this classification, the foreign worker must show evidence of exceptional ability in the sciences, arts, or business. Exceptional ability “means a degree of expertise significantly above that ordinarily encountered in the sciences, arts, or business.”
- National Interest Waiver: This classification has been set aside for aliens who have requested that the normally required Labor Certification be waived because it is in the interest of the U.S. Jobs that qualify for this waiver are not defined by law, but waivers are usually granted to those who have exceptional ability and whose employment in the U.S. would provide a significant benefit to the country.
The evidence a foreign worker needs to produce in order to qualify for an EB-2 visa depends on the category he/she falls under any of the following categories:
Advanced Degree EB-2 visas:
Here, the foreigner must provide documentation that shows he has a U.S. advanced degree or an equivalent foreign degree, or an official academic record showing that he has a U.S. baccalaureate degree or the foreign equivalent and letters from current or former employers certifying that he has at least five years of progressive post-graduate work experience in the designated area.
Exceptional Ability EB-2 visas:
Here, the foreign worker must provide evidence for a minimum of three of the following criteria:
- Official academic record showing that he has a degree, diploma, certificate, or other similar award from a college, university, etc., relating to his area of exceptional ability;
- Letters showing at least ten years of full-time experience in the designated area;
- A license to practice his profession;
- Proof that he commands a certain salary for his services (therefore demonstrating his exceptional ability);
- Membership with a professional association;
- Recognition for his achievements by peers, government entities, or other professional organizations; and/or
- Other comparable evidence of eligibility is also permitted.
National Interest Waiver EB2-NIW visas:
To qualify for an EB2-NIW visa, the foreign worker must meet at least three of the above-listed criteria and also demonstrate that by working in the U.S. he will provide a benefit for the country. The advantage of EB2-NIW visas is that the labor certification requirement (“PERM”) required for other EB-2 visas is waived.
Unless the foreigner qualifies for a National Interest Waiver, the employer has to obtain a labor certification (PERM) first. Then the employer may file the I-140 Form with the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).
The PERM labor certification takes about six months. After that, getting an EB-2 visa may take months or years depending on the foreigner’s country of citizenship.
The EB-2 visa processing fee is $345.
Yes, though they have to submit visa immigrant applications. Husbands, wives, and single children under age 21 are considered “derivative beneficiaries.” Spouses are eligible for E-21 visa status, and children for E-22 visa status.
Call a Nevada immigration attorney…
If you are a foreigner of extraordinary ability who wishes to work in Nevada…or if you are a Nevada employer looking to hire accomplished workers, you may be able to get an EB-2 visa. Contact our Las Vegas immigration attorneys for a consultation.