Understanding the EB1 Requirements

Below are some key requirements you must fulfill to apply for an EB-1 Extraordinary Ability Visa. For each requirement, we have included forms of evidence that you may submit to meet the requirement and other tips to help you prepare your petition. Providing the required initial evidence does not, in itself, establish that you are an individual of extraordinary ability. USCIS will evaluate the evidence you submit in its entirety to make a final merits determination.

Requirement 1 – You must be able to establish that you have extraordinary ability in your field.

The EB-1 extraordinary ability classification is for people who are recognized as being at the very top of their field and who are coming to the United States to continue work in that field. To establish eligibility, you must demonstrate sustained national or international acclaim and that your achievements have been recognized in the field of expertise by showing:  (1) that you have received a major internationally recognized award, similar to a Nobel Prize; or (2) that you meet at least three of the ten requirements listed below and all your evidence, when evaluated together, shows that you are among the small percentage of individuals that have risen to the very top of your field. If you have not received a major internationally recognized award, you must answer yes and submit evidence for at least 3 of the 10 questions below:

  • Have you received any lesser nationally or internationally recognized prizes or awards for excellence in the field of endeavor?
  • Are you a member of associations that require outstanding achievements of their members as judged by recognized national or international experts?
  • Is there published material in professional or major trade publications or major media about you which relates to your work in the field?
  • Have you participated on a panel or individually as a judge of the work of others in the same or in an allied field of specialization?
  • Have you made original scientific, scholarly or business contributions that are of major significance?
  • Have you authored scholarly articles in professional journals or other major media?
  • Has your work been displayed at artistic exhibitions or showcases?
  • Have you played a leading or critical role for an organization with a distinguished reputation?
  • Have you or will you command a high salary or other remuneration for your services in comparison to others in your field?
  • Have you enjoyed commercial successes in the performing arts?
Note: If the criteria discussed in this section do not readily apply to your occupation, you may submit comparable evidence to establish your eligibility. However, there is no comparable evidence for the one-time achievement of a major, international recognized award.

Requirement 2 – You must be able to establish that you are coming to the United States to continue to work in your area of extraordinary ability.

Some of the evidence you may submit to demonstrate that you are coming to the United States to continue to work in your area of extraordinary ability includes:

  • Letters from current or prospective employers
  • Documents evidencing your prearranged commitments (e.g. contracts)
  • A statement detailing your plans on how you intend to continue working in your field in the United States

This article has been reprinted from the USCIS website. All information is accurate at the time of this writing. Please contact our office regarding this matter as current requirements may have been updated or changed.