Priority Workers

Immigrants in the first employment-based or “EB-1” preference category, who are referred to as “priority workers,” consist of EB-1A aliens of extraordinary ability, EB-1B outstanding professors and researchers, and EB-1C transferring executives and managers of multinational companies. None of the priority-worker categories are subject to a labor-certification requirement, but sponsorship by a petitioning employer is required for EB-1B and EB-1C immigrants. Immigrants qualified under the EB-1A classification as persons of extraordinary ability may file petitions for themselves.

EB-1A – Extraordinary Ability Immigrants

Priority worker classification under the EB-1A provisions is available to a candidate:

  • Who has extraordinary ability in the sciences, arts, education, business, or athletics, which has been demonstrated by sustained national or international acclaim;
  • Whose achievements have been recognized in the field through extensive documentation;
  • Who seeks to enter the United States to continue work in the area of extraordinary ability; and
  • Whose entry into the United States will substantially benefit prospectively the United States.

EB-1B – Outstanding Professors and Researchers

Priority worker classification under the EB-1B provisions is available to a candidate who:

  • Is recognized internationally as outstanding in a specific academic area;
  • Has at least three years of experience in teaching or research in the academic area; and
  • Seeks to enter the United States either for a tenured or tenure-track position with a university or institution of higher education to teach in the academic area; or
  • For a comparable position with a university or institution of higher education to conduct research in the area; or
  • For a comparable position to conduct research in the area with a department, division, or institute of a private employer, if the department, division, or institute employs at least three persons full-time in research activities and has achieved documented accomplishments in an academic field.

EB-1C – Transferring Executive or Managerial Employee of Multinational Firms

Priority worker classification under the EB-1C provisions is available to a candidate who:

  • In the three years preceding the time of the candidate’s application for classification and admission into the United States, was employed for at least one year by a firm or corporation or other legal entity or an affiliate or subsidiary thereof; and
  • Seeks to enter the United States in order to continue to render services to the same employer or to a subsidiary or affiliate thereof that has been continuously doing business in the United States for at least one year;
  • In a capacity that is managerial or executive.

The requirements for immigration under the EB-1C category closely parallel and complement the L-1A nonimmigrant visa provisions.