National Interest Waiver (NIW)

National Interest Waiver (NIW)

Self-petition approved and green card granted.
  • 05/16/2006 AO was approved for his first F-1 visa (with post-completion OPT and additional 17-month extension for STEM) to complete his doctorate degree and research, until 2011.
  • 10/01/2012 AO was approved for his initial H-1B status as a Design Engineer for a heavy-industry firm in IL.
  • 08/30/2013 AO filed an I-140 self-petition for an employment-based immigrant visa, under the EB-2, National Interest Waiver category.
  • 09/27/2013 AO was approved for an employment-based immigrant visa.
  • 10/09/2013 AO files an application to adjust status, in order to be issued a green card.
  • 01/27/2014 AO was approved for a green card, and is now a U.S. lawful permanent resident.

Success Story

AO is a national of Egypt, and held a bachelor’s and a master’s in an engineering-related field. He was a pioneering and brilliant researcher, and had several patents issued in his name. He applied for and was accepted to a full scholarship for a doctorate degree in the U.S. When he finished his doctorate, he was immediately accepted to work as a design engineer by a heavy-industry firm that petitioned him as an H-1B temporary nonimmigrant worker in 2012.

AO’s credentials and original research were highly sought after by many firms, but most were dismayed to learn that AO could work for them on a temporary basis – and only for 6 years at a time under the H-1B visa. Furthermore, they already knew about the process of how to petition for a foreign worker permanently, specifically the requirement of labor certification (i.e., proving that there is no qualified U.S. national who is able and willing to do the job) which entails months or a year or more of processing time.

Through our firm, AO learned of an alternative to the labor certification process in getting his green card, which is the National Interest Waiver or NIW. Through NIW, a petitioner (or even the employee himself or herself, without a job offer) must prove that waiving the labor certification requirement will benefit the national interests of the U.S. This is a tall order for sure, and our firm was there to assist AO in identifying and drafting the documents that would be needed to prove this requirement, and how to present them in a manner that is easily accessible to a USCIS adjudicator.

Our firm closely collaborated with AO, and through several days of discussions, we identified the specific points of his expertise that would qualify for the NIW, and had a shortlist of academic experts who would be willing to sign letters of recommendation for AO. These letters, along with AO’s academic publications and awards, pointed out the uniqueness and originality of his research and how it would benefit the U.S.’s public and private sectors in the field of AO’s specialty.

AO filed his petition on 2013, and it was approved 30 days later. Three months later, AO received his green card and is now able to work for any employer in the U.S. without restriction.