EB-2: Employment-Based Immigration: Second Preference
Category EB-2 is an employment-based, second-preference immigrant visa that allows to apply for permanent resident status. Generally speaking, it is available to foreign nationals who hold an advanced educational degree or its equivalent.
Labor Certification and Ability to Pay.
Before the employer can submit an employment-based petition, the company is usually required to first obtain a Labor Certification from the Department of Labor (in certain situations a blanket (Schedule A) certification may be obtained). The employer must also be able to demonstrate an ability to pay the offered wage until the worker receives the lawful permanent resident status.
There is an option to waive the requirement of having a job offer, in which case there is no need to have the Labor Certification and to demonstrate an employer’s ability to pay a wage. This can be achieved through requesting a waiver in the national interest through the petition filed with USCIS. This means the qualified individuals do not need an employer sponsorship because their exceptional ability and their field of work is in fact going to benefit the interest of the United States. (Please see our special page dedicated to NIW for more information on the requirements and the process).
EB-3: Employment-Based Immigration: Third Preference
This category is the most popular one of the employment-based green card applications because it includes a wide array of training and skill levels, from “Professionals” for applicants with at least a bachelor’s degree or its equivalent, to “Skilled Workers” for applicants with a minimum of 2 years training or experience, to “Other Workers” for applicants who perform unskilled labor, not seasonal or temporary in nature, requiring less than 2 years of training or experience. Over the years, employers have been taking advantage of this visa category to bring thousands of employees from outside the US for positions they could not fill with American workers, such as IT specialists, dental assistants, cooks, and construction workers. EB-3 category is not eligible for a National Interest Waiver and must go through the Labor Certification process.