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Extraordinary Ability Petitions

Extraordinary Ability Petitions

The Extraordinary Ability priority worker category does not require a job offer. This means that either an employer may petition for an EB-1 extraordinary worker or the worker may petition for himself or herself. If the worker self-petitions, he or she must show evidence of contracts or prearranged commitments for future employment or a description of how he or she will continue to be gainfully employed in the U.S.

USCIS regulations define extraordinary ability as a “level of expertise indicating that the individual is one of a small percentage that has risen to the very top of the field of endeavor.” The statutes state that this level of ability must be demonstrated by sustained national or international acclaim and by recognition in the field by extensive documentation. USCIS will look for evidence that the work the individual will perform will substantially benefit the U.S.

In order to demonstrate extraordinary ability, the applicant must show that his or her ability has been recognized in the field of endeavor through sustained acclaim. This can be shown through a single major internationally recognized achievement such as a Nobel Prize, Pulitzer Prize or an Academy Award.

Alternatively, the applicant can demonstrate three of the following ten criteria:

  • Receipt of lesser national or international prizes or awards for excellence in their field of endeavor;
  • Membership in associations in the field of endeavor that require outstanding achievements of their members as judged by recognized national or international experts;
  • Published material about the alien and his work in professional journals, trade publications, or the major media;
  • Participation, either in a group or alone, as a judge of others in the same or a similar field;
  • Original scientific, scholarly, or artistic contributions of major significance in the field of endeavor;
  • Authorship of scholarly articles in the field, published in professional journals or the major media;
  • Display of the alien’s work at artistic exhibitions or showcases in more than one country;
  • Performance in a lead, starring, or critical role for organizations with a distinguished reputation;
  • Commanding a high salary compared to others in the field; or
  • Commercial success in the performing arts, as shown by box office receipts and sales.

Realizing that these ten categories of evidence do not encompass all the evidence that could be presented to show extraordinary ability, USCIS also allows for any other comparable evidence.

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Effective March 25, 2020, in response to “Stay at Home” orders Joseph & Hall PC is closed to the public and is now conducting nearly all of its operations remotely during the COVID-19 health crisis through April 18th.

We continue to have a limited number of staff in our office to perform basic operations such as assembling and filing petitions, receiving and distributing mail and issuing checks. We are grateful to be in a business that is conducive to remote work and for all of your patience and support.  Our lawyers and paralegals are here to answer the array of questions that continue to arise daily and will keep you informed during these rapidly changing times.  We will hold telephonic or video meetings rather than in-person meetings.  These meetings can be done by SKYPE or Zoom Conference call so that you can continue to interact with your legal team, face-to-face.

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