National Interest Waiver
The National Interest Waiver is part of the EB2 employment based green card category. It allows foreign nationals to self petition for permanent residency. No permanent job offer or employer sponsorship is required. However, you must be able to demonstrate how you will be able to contribute to society in your field of expertise.
National Interest Waiver (NIW)
Because the national interest waiver is in the EB2 category, you must be eligible for EB2 classification. You can do so be either proving that you have an advanced degree or exceptional ability. An advanced degree is defined as MA/MS or better or a BA/BS plus five years of progressive work experience in your area of expertise. Exceptional ability means a degree of expertise significantly above that ordinarily encountered in the sciences, arts, or business. This can be evidenced by proving three of the following:
- Official academic record showing that you have a degree, diploma, certificate, or similar award from a college, university, school, or other institution of learning relating to your area of exceptional ability
- Letters documenting at least 10 years of full-time experience in your occupation
- A license to practice your profession or certification for your profession or occupation
- Evidence that you have commanded a salary or other remuneration for services that demonstrates your exceptional ability
- Membership in a professional association(s)
- Recognition for your achievements and significant contributions to your industry or field by your peers, government entities, professional or business organizations
- Other comparable evidence of eligibility is also acceptable.
National Interest Waiver Requirements
To qualify for the national interest waiver, the applicant must show the following
- That the alien seeks employment in an area of substantial intrinsic merit;
The evidence required to meet this element typically falls into one of these categories
- Benefit the US economy;
- Improve wages and working conditions of US workers;
- Improve education;
- Provide more affordable housing;
- Improve the environment of the US;
- Make more productive use of natural resources; or
- Serve the interests of a US government agency.
- That the proposed benefit will be national in scope; and
The evidence must show that the applicant would provide a benefit to the US that is more than local in scope. This is easily demonstrated if your work is in the field of research or if it can be argued that you will provide employment opportunities for Americans.
- That the national interest would be adversely affected if a labor certification would be required for the alien.
The evidence must show that the applicant has a record of specific prior achievements that would justify a projection of future benefit to the US. This can be shown through receipt of awards, professional publications and citations, scientific conference presentations, recommendation letters, media articles about you or your work, patents and their use in commerce and more.