Permanent Visas: Employment

Outstanding Researchers and Professor

Outstanding ResearchersTo qualify for this category of the Employment Based First Preference quota, the Outstanding Researchers applicant must have international recognition for outstanding academic achievements in a particular field and at least three years experience in teaching or research in that field. No labor certification is required, but the applicant must have a sponsoring employer who provides a qualifying job offer.

If the sponsoring employer is a university or other institution of higher education, the job offer must provide a tenure or tenure track teaching or comparable research position. If the employer is a private company (either for-profit or non-profit) rather than an educational institution, the employer must employ at least three persons full time in research activities and the employer itself must have achieved documented accomplishments in an academic field.

Evidence that the professor or researcher is recognized as outstanding in the academic field must include documentation of at least two of the following:

  1. Receipt of major prizes or awards for outstanding achievement:
  2. Membership in associations that require their members to demonstrate outstanding achievements;
  3. Published material in professional publications written by others about the alien’s work in the academic field;
  4. Participation, either on a panel or individually, as a judge of the work of others in the same or allied academic field;
  5. Original scientific or scholarly research contributions in the field;
  6. Authorship of scholarly books or articles (in scholarly journals with international circulation) in the field.


The Immigrant Visa Petition, Form I-140, is filed by the applicant with the Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS). If the applicant meets the requirements for adjustment of status, he or she may file an application for adjustment of status, Form I-485 concurrently with the I-140. In the alternative, the applicant may wait until the I-140 has been approved and then proceed with either adjustment of status or consular processing of an immigrant visa.

For further information, please contact us.