New STEM EB-2 NIW Guidelines for 2022

STEM graduates now have a carved-out path to Permanent Residency.

USCIS recognizes the importance of progress in STEM fields and the essential role of persons with advanced STEM degrees in fostering this progress, especially in focused critical and emerging technologies or other STEM areas important to U.S. competitiveness or national security.

U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services announced updated guidance on adjudicating requests for “National Interest Waivers” regarding waiving job offer and labor certification requirements for certain advanced degree professionals and individuals of exceptional ability. This includes discussing the unique considerations for persons with advanced degrees in science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) fields and entrepreneurs.

Individuals seeking a national interest waiver must show evidence of an advanced degree or exceptional ability and must also meet three factors that USCIS uses to determine, in its discretion, whether it is in the national interest that USCIS waive the requirement of a job offer, and thus the labor certification.

Evidence must demonstrate that a STEM endeavor has both substantial merit and national importance. Many proposed endeavors that aim to advance STEM technologies and research, whether in academic or industry settings, not only have substantial merit in relation to U.S. science and technology interests, but also have sufficiently broad potential implications to demonstrate national importance

  • The person possesses an advanced STEM degree, particularly a Ph.D.;

  • The person will be engaged in work furthering a critical and emerging technology or other STEM area important to U.S. competitiveness; and

  • The person is well positioned to advance the proposed STEM endeavor of national importance.

The three factors USCIS considers for a national interest waiver are whether:

  • The person’s proposed endeavor has both substantial merit and national importance.

  • The person is well positioned to advance the proposed endeavor; and

  • It would be beneficial to the United States to waive the job offer and thus the permanent labor certification requirements.

One may also qualify for EB-2 where one is able to show Exceptional Ability in the sciences, arts, or business.  In these types of cases, “exceptional ability” is general referred to “a degree of expertise significantly above that ordinarily encountered in the sciences, arts, or business.”

Those seeking a national interest waiver may self-petition (they do not need an employer to sponsor them).

The spouse and children of the applicant will also receive Permanent Residency.

Please contact us for more information and to determine eligibility.

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