Law Offices of Fogam & Associates, LLC

“National Interest Waiver”: One Of The Fastest Ways To Get Your Green Card In The U.S.


One of the Fastest Ways to Obtain a “Green Card”

  1. Do you have an advanced degree (any degree above a Bachelor’s degree)?
  2. Is your research / work in an area that is beneficial to the national interest of the United States?

If you answered yes to the above questions, you may be eligible to obtain permanent resident status (“green card”) in the United States.

  • Within about 1 year.
  • Without a job or an employer.
  • Without a job offer
  • Obtain work authorization within 90 days after filing and while waiting for your green card.
  • Obtain a travel document to travel in and out of the United States while waiting for your green card.
  • Apply for, and have your family members also be given a green card

Sounds too good to be true? Read on.

Normally and generally, to hire an advanced degree professional, or an alien of exceptional ability, and file for him or her to obtain permanent resident status (“green card”) in the United States, an employer will need to go through a lengthy process known as, Program Electronic Review Management (PERM), to obtain a Labor Certification.

The PERM or Labor certification process, requires any U. S. employer who intends to petition for and hire a foreign national to demonstrate that there is a shortage of qualified U.S. workers in the particular profession in which the alien will be hired. Clearly, this is quite a heavy burden for any employer to carry. It is also obvious that the goal of the Labor Certification process is to protect U.S. workers.

However, U.S. immigration laws provide an exception to the lengthy and cumbersome PERM. This is generally referred to as the “national interest waiver” provision. Under this provision, the requirement of a job offer and therefore the labor certification process can be waived, if it is determined that it is in the national interest of the United States to do so. The national interest waiver is available to foreign nationals who demonstrate exceptional abilities as well as to those who hold advanced degrees

The term national interest is not defined by statute and remains fluid, nebulous and contentious. However, many precedent decisions afford some guidance. Most notable amongst these is a famous case known as Matter of New York State Department of Transportation (122 I & N Dec. 215). According to this inherently contradictory 1998 decision, which USCIS has heavily relied on, a national interest waiver should be granted if three requirements are met. These three requirements are first, that the area of intended employment be of “substantial intrinsic merit”, second that the proposed benefit be “national in scope” and third that there is a showing that it is contrary to the national interest to deprive the prospective employer of the services of the alien by making the position available to United States workers. In other words the question is, whether the foreign national’s background and work are such that they outweigh the national interest of protecting American workers through the labor certification process.

There are many obvious advantages of seeking and obtaining permanent resident status through the national interest waiver, as compared to the regular labor certification process, and even other routes. These are:

  1. It is quicker since the lengthy labor certification process is avoided. The labor certification process may take between 2 to 5 years. A national interest waiver petition may be completed in 1 year.
  2. The cost of seeking labor certification, including the cost of advertising the position, would generally be more than that of a national interest waiver visa petition.
  3. The foreign national has more flexibility with the national interest waiver petition. He or she may obtain a work authorization, work with any employer while the petition is pending and can obtain a travel document during the process.
  4. If in the U.S. the foreign national may file an EB-1 extraordinary ability petition and an EB-2 national interest waiver petition at the same time if he or she qualifies for both.
  5. The foreign national may also apply for permanent resident status for himself and his family members at the time of filing the national interest waiver petition.

The Law Offices of Fogam & Associates, LLC has assisted many advanced degree and exceptional ability foreign nationals to obtained permanent resident status in the United States. Many of these benefited along with their spouses and children.

We are offering EB-2: National Interest Waiver consultation services in the areas of Montgomery County, MD, Frederick County, Carroll County and Howard County.

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We have represented individual and families from all over the world in immigration matters. We have also represented many corporations and businesses in the United States.

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