Not only does the employment-based procedure take less time than family-based immigration, but companies who sponsor foreign nationals typically have access to financial, legal, and other resources that can help make the process go more smoothly. The employment-based immigration procedure is an excellent way for many persons born outside the United States to get a green card and permanent residency.
Not only does the employment-based procedure take less time than family-based immigration, but companies who sponsor foreign nationals typically have access to financial, legal, and other resources that can help make the process go more smoothly. However, the US government is well aware of the strong demand for permanent residency and makes it difficult to obtain.
Congress developed several visa “priority categories” with the U.S. labor market and country’s requirements in mind, which emphasize some occupations and careers above others when choosing who would be permitted to petition for permanent residency. This means that some occupations and careers are more likely (and faster) to qualify as a strong foundation for a green card application.
Let’s take a look at how the preference categories operate and which occupations could be more suitable for obtaining a green card.
Preference Categories Based on Employment
Jobs are classified into employment preference groups based on the degree of education required to perform the job’s responsibilities.
A bachelor’s degree in computer science would be required for an entry-level Computer Programmer employment, whereas a master’s degree in physics would be required for a Nuclear Physicist position. Take a look at the Visa Bulletin, which is issued monthly by the US Department of State.
The Visa Bulletin provides the general education criteria for each of the employment-based visa categories.
Who Meets the Criteria for the First Preference Category?
Persons with “exceptional talent,” excellent academics or researchers, or multinational executives or managers are eligible for the employment-based First Preference category.
This category, as you might expect, is for the “cream of the crop.” Nobel Laureates, well-known worldwide scientists such as Albert Einstein and Stephen Hawking, and international performers such as Yo-Yo Ma and Vicente Fernández typically fall into this preferred group. “Multinational executives or managers” are also included in First Preference.
These are top-level corporate executives and business leaders, not line managers or ground-level supervisors, who have broad authority to make choices that influence whole companies. Mark Zuckerberg, Meg Whitman, and Jeff Bezos are all fantastic examples of the sort of person this category describes. If your profession and career fit into this category, you may be eligible for First Preference, which means you’ll get an immigrant visa number and an easy path to a green card almost immediately. (You probably also have an attorney who can explain everything in this post to you!)
Who Meets the Criteria for the Second Preference Category?
Not everyone is fortunate enough to be a person of “exceptional aptitude” or the CEO of a large multinational corporation.
If your professional path necessitates an advanced degree, such as a master’s degree or higher, or if you possess outstanding aptitude in the sciences, arts, or business, you may be eligible for the Second Preference category. This may be the greatest option for many people pursuing a green card through work.
While not as beneficial as First Preference visa numbers, Second Preference visa numbers are usually available promptly, with little or no waiting period. Even better, the Second Preference criteria are met by a larger range of occupations. You can probably qualify for Second Preference if a company is prepared to sponsor you for a green card and your prospective position needs at least a Master’s degree or the equivalent.
Accountants, Civil Engineers, Computer Engineers, Financial or Investment Managers, Business or Management Analysts, and Chemists or Chemical Engineers are all common jobs at this level. The US Department of Labor’s O*NET Online website is a useful location to look for up-and-coming professional categories that will likely fulfill the Second Preference standards. This site gathers statistics about US job markets and professional areas, such as typical degree and experience requirements, popularity and demand, and prospective wages.
This site can also assist you in determining which occupations and fields are in great demand in the United States. Immigration officials are continuously aware of the job market’s demands in the United States. Alternatively, you may be eligible for Second Preference if you have extraordinary skills in a certain scientific, creative, or business sector. This, like the “exceptional ability” requirement in First Preference, can be difficult to fulfill.
You must be able to demonstrate significant achievements and contributions to your industry or field, using evidence such as industry, government, or peer recognition, awards and salaries recognizing exceptional ability, publications and peer-reviewed papers you’ve authored, and letters from previous employers demonstrating ten or more years of experience in your field. If you want more information about your Second Preference case, contact an immigration attorney.
Who Is Eligible for the Third Preference Group?
Positions in the Third Preference category need at least a Bachelor’s degree or the equivalent to fulfilling the job requirements.
Third Preference is a far more accessible way of obtaining permanent residency through work; nevertheless, this also means that many more individuals seek permanent residence through this category than through others, resulting in much longer wait periods for available visa numbers.
After an employer files a Third Preference petition, you may have to wait four years or longer to begin the process of obtaining a green card. The increased wait periods associated with the Third Preference are not insurmountable.
You could be allowed to work in the United States as a nonimmigrant until a visa number becomes available if you can locate a company prepared to sponsor you as a Third Preference worker while also sponsoring you for a nonimmigrant work-authorized visa, such as the H-1B or L-1. Be aware that this arrangement necessitates much planning and a positive working relationship between you and your employer.
If you think you’ll be taking this path, talk to an immigration lawyer.