- The NIW (National Interest Waiver) is a special category under Second Preference Employment-Based Immigration (EB-2).
- No offer of employment or employer sponsorship is required.
- No labor certification from Department of Labor is required.
- NIW is suitable for professionals with advanced degree or exceptional ability in the sciences, arts, or business. NIW is also applicable to a self-employed entrepreneur, if he/she can demonstrate that the business will benefit the economy on a national level.
The alien must be with an advanced degree or exceptional ability and be able to persuasively demonstrate that his/her activity will greatly benefit the national interest of the United States. Practically, all three of the following requirements should be elaborated:
- The alien seeks employment in a field of substantial intrinsic merit of the United States;
- The alien’s work will benefit the United States in the national scope; and
- The national interest will be adversely affected if a labor certification is required.
The arguments for national interests may include:
- The petition is requested from an interested US government agency;
- Improvement of US economy;
- Improvement of wages and working conditions of US workers;
- Improvement of US environment; etc.
The alien must meet 3 out of the 7 criteria below:
- Official academic record showing that the alien has a degree, diploma, certificate, or similar award from a college, university, school, or other institution of learning relating to the area of exceptional ability
- Letters documenting at least 10 years of full-time experience in the occupation
- A license to practice the profession or certification for the profession or occupation
- Evidence that the alien has commanded a salary or other remuneration for services that demonstrates the exceptional ability
- Membership in the professional association(s)
- Recognition for the alien’s achievements and significant contributions to the industry or field by peers, government entities, professional or business organizations
- Other comparable evidence of eligibility is also acceptable