Employment Green Cards

EB-1A Green Card

EB-1A Green Card is a subcategory of EB-1 employment-based Green Card, and it is issued to people who harness extraordinary ability in the sciences, arts, education, business, or athletics.

Eligibility Requirements:

  • The applicant must continue working in the area of his/her expertise after coming to the U.S. 
  • The applicant must have evidence of his/her extraordinary achievement in his or her area of expertise. This could be a Pulitzer, Oscar, or Olympic Medal.  

If the applicant does not have such an internationally recognized achievement, s/he must meet at least three of the ten criteria;

  • Evidence of receipt of lesser nationally or internationally recognized prizes or awards for excellence
  • Evidence of the applicant’s membership in associations in the field which demand outstanding achievement of their members
  • Evidence of published material about the applicant in professional or major trade publications or other major media
  • Evidence that the applicant has been asked to judge the work of others, either individually or on a panel
  • Evidence of the applicant’s original scientific, scholarly, artistic, athletic, or business-related contributions of major significance to the field
  • Evidence of the applicant’s authorship of scholarly articles in professional or major trade publications or other major media
  • Evidence that the applicant’s work has been displayed at artistic exhibitions or showcases
  • Evidence of the applicant’s performance in a leading or critical role in distinguished organizations
  • Evidence that the applicant commands a high salary or other significantly high remuneration in relation to others in the field
  • Evidence of the applicant’s commercial successes in the performing arts

Family Members:

The spouses and unmarried children under the age of 21 are eligible to accompany the applicant. Spouses may seek admission in E-14 and children in E-15 immigrant status. 


Yes. Unlike many other Green Cards through employment categories, you can sponsor yourself for EB-1A Green Card.  

Fortunately, EB-1A Green Card processing time is much shorter than other Green Card categories for applicants changing their status to EB-1A, thanks mostly to the permission of self-petitioning. The average processing time of I-140 is one year. 

It is possible to apply EB-1A under premium processing categories with additional payment.  

Yes! Applicants who are not in a legal nonimmigrant status and reside outside of the U.S. can apply for EB-1A through consular processing, though this pathway is, unfortunately, longer than an adjustment of status. To learn more about consular processing, please visit Consular Processing. 


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