Every year, the Immigration and Nationality Act makes a minimum of 140,000 employments based visas available to immigrants seeking work in the United States. Getting one of these employment visas requires meeting government standards and filing the correct applications and petitions to the proper authorities.
The Five Classes of Employment Visas
The United States Department of State has created five preference classes for issuing employment visas.
E1, Priority Workers
This preference class of employment based visas is reserved for persons who have demonstrated extraordinary ability in the arts, athletics, business, education or science. This class also includes some researchers and certain executives. Employment based visas are issued to persons in this priority class without requiring proof of a job offer in the United States.
E2, Professionals Holding Advanced Degrees
The second employment based visa preference is for professionals with advanced degrees, as well as people with exceptional ability in professional fields. Unlike the E1 classification, a verified job offer is required to be eligible for this employment visa.
E3, Skilled Workers, Professionals Holding Baccalaureate Degrees, Other Workers
Skilled workers whose jobs require two or more years of training and experience and professionals with bachelor degrees receive employment visas under this designation. Unclaimed employment based visas from the E1 and E2 preferences are also issued to workers who fit this preference class. At this level of preference, the employer must petition for the foreign worker to receive an employment based visa.
E4, Special Immigrants
The State Department currently recognizes 17 skills, backgrounds, and job titles as being worthy of a fourth preference employment based visa. Receiving one of these employment visas requires being petitioned with Form I-360, an application for this type of visa.
A very few foreigners may be eligible for an employment visa by investing in the infrastructure of America and creating at least ten jobs through a legitimate commercial enterprise.
Some employment based immigration visas may require additional paperwork or verification. Usually, this additional verification must come from the United States Department of Labor or United States Citizenship and Immigration Services.
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