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Do you qualify for an employment visa?

Immigration Services

Each fiscal year, the United States government grants 140,000 employment visas. If your education, skills and work experience fall into one of the five employment visa categories, you could obtain the right to reside here. Of course, you must meet all of the other qualifications required for entry into the country.

Before you can even begin the process of obtaining an employment visa, your prospective employer must obtain a "Labor Certification" that indicates the following:

1. A U.S. citizen cannot be found who possesses the qualifications, willingness and availability to perform the job you wish to fill at the income offered to you.

2. Your hiring will not negatively affect the working conditions or wages of U.S. citizens in similar positions.

Not all permanent worker visas require this certification.

What kind of employment visas exist in the United States?

Five separate classifications exist for those who wish to enter the country on an employment visa.

1. EB-1: This employment preference includes individuals who possess extraordinary skills in the following:

  • Science
  • Athletics
  • Business
  • Arts
  • Education

It also includes individuals considered outstanding as researchers or professors, along with multinational managers and executives. This classification does not require a Labor Certification.

2. EB-2: This employment preference includes individuals who possess exceptional skills in the following:

  • Science
  • Business
  • Arts

It also includes individuals with advanced degrees in certain professions. This classification requires a Labor Certification unless a national interest waiver is obtained.

3. EB-3: This employment preference includes skilled workers, professionals and other workers. This classification requires a Labor Certification.

4. EB-4: This employment preference includes the following special immigrants:

  • Religious workers
  • Retired employees of international organizations
  • Employees of U.S. foreign service posts
  • Alien minors who are wards of United States courts

Other classes of aliens might receive an employment visa under this classification. No need for a Labor Classification exists.

5. EB-5: This employment preference includes business entrepreneurs who start a new commercial enterprise here in the United States with a minimum investment of $1 million. The business must employ at least 10 full-time workers with U.S. citizenship. The investment only needs to be at least $500,000 in certain targeted employment areas. No need for a Labor Classification exists.

The challenge lies in determining which visa you need. Thereafter, you or your employer might need assistance in obtaining the appropriate visa. A Kentucky immigration attorney can help answer your questions and help you obtain your visa.

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