Professionals with Advanced Degrees (EB-2)


Permanent Visas Through Employment: Professionals with Advanced Degrees

This subcategory is reserved for professionals with an advanced degree or individuals with exceptional abilities. An advanced degree is defined as a master’s degree (or higher) or its equivalent. The equivalent of a master’s degree is generally defined as a bachelor’s degree plus at least five years of progressively more responsible experience in the profession. If the individual possess a foreign advanced degree, the degree must be equivalent to a U.S. advanced degree. If a position normally requires a doctorate degree, the person must possess a doctorate degree to qualify for the EB-2 category.

EB-2 petitions for professionals with advanced degrees require prior approval of a PERM Labor Certification issued by the U.S. Department of Labor.

Permanent Visas Through Employment: Individuals of Exceptional Ability

This subcategory is reserved for persons with an advanced degree and degree of expertise above that ordinarily encountered in the arts, sciences or business. An individual must provide evidence meeting at least three of the following six criteria:

  1. Possess a degree relating to the area of exceptional ability;
  2. Letter from current or former employers showing at least ten years of full-time experience in the occupation;
  3. A license to practice the profession;
  4. Evidence the person commands a salary demonstrating exceptional ability;
  5. Membership in professional associations; or
  6. Recognition for achievements and significant contributions to the industry or field by peers, governmental entities, or professional or business organizations.

If an individual has additional types of evidence that can demonstrate exceptional ability in a field, such evidence will be considered.

A person seeking to immigrate as a Member of the Professions Holding Advanced Degrees or as an Individuals of Exceptional Ability must have a company sponsor. Self-sponsorship is not allowed.

EB-2 petitions for individuals with exceptional abilities does not require prior approval of a PERM Labor Certification issued by the U.S. Department of Labor. A PERM Labor Certification may be waived in two circumstances: (1) if the person can demonstrate his/her work will be in the national interest; or (2) the position is already pre-certified by the U.S. Department of Labor as a Schedule A Group I or II occupation.