Green Cards for Postdoctoral Research Fellows with NIW

Our firm was recently successful in obtaining approval of two I-140 immigrant petition in the EB-2 category with National Interest Waiver.

As known, an immigrant petition generally requires the existence of a job offer from a U.S. employer and the approval by the Dept. of Labor of a labor certification certifying that there are no U.S. workers able, willing, qualified and available to accept the job at the prevailing wage for that position. However, in certain circumstances, a job offer is not required and the applicant can self petition.

In the EB-2 category (a professional holding an advanced degree or its equivalent) the applicant must demonstrate the following in order to qualify for the national interest waiver (NIW) and thus eliminate the need for the Labor Certification:

1. the employment is in an area of substantial intrinsic merit
2. the proposed benefit will be national in scope
3. the national interest would be adversely affected if labor certification were required

On behalf of our client, a citizen of Ukraine, we requested a waiver of the requirement of a job offer and labor certification per INA § 203(b)(2)(B) asserting that it is in the national interest for USCIS to waive these requirements. The client held a B.S. and an M.S. in Chemical Engineering from a Ukrainian university. She had also completed a Ph.D. at a U.S. university and was now a J-1 Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the University of Michigan. Her research interests of national and global importance were focusing on protein structures relative to HIV transmission and neurodegenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, and type-2 diabetes. Her findings had been published in the Journal of the American Chemical Society, in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America, and in the journal Nature Structural & Molecular Biology. Her studies were also reported in numerous publications having been cited in well over one hundred articles by authors in the United States and around the globe.

With the client’s help we gathered evidence of her work and publications, and obtained numerous letters of recommendation from professors and experts who attested to her significant contribution to the field of Biochemistry research on these major diseases.

Because premium processing for National Interest Waiver I-140 petitions is not available, we submitted the application package at the end of January 2011 and received the approval in July 2011. Client is now in the process of adjusting the status to legal permanent residency.

Another client we represented in a NIW case is from India. She completed her B.S. degree in India, graduated with a M.S. and Ph.D in Physics from a U.S. university, and was now in H-1B status as a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at one of the country’s top universities.

We submitted the I-140 petition in April 2011 which was approved 3 months later. She is now waiting for the priority date to become current to apply for adjustment of status.

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