Following is information regarding the three most common methods for UNMC/UNO employees to obtain permanent residence. The first two categories are employer-sponsored. This means that the employer must first apply to and receive approvals from US government agencies. The sponsored employee then provides a copy of his/her employer’s approval as supporting documentation to apply to become a permanent resident of the United States.
EB-1b Outstanding Researcher Category
The advantage of the EB-1b category is that it is a much faster process than other categories. However, this category is difficult to qualify for. The evidence primarily focuses on the research-related accomplishments of the sponsored employee. To determine whether an employee and job title qualifies for this type of sponsorship, the employee schedules a consultation with the Office of Global Engagement. A determination is made using both quantitative and qualitative data.If it is determined that the employee qualifies under this category and the hiring department agrees to sponsor the employee for permanent residence, then after supporting evidence showing that the employee qualifies as an Outstanding Professor or Researcher is prepared, this office prepares Form I-140 on behalf of UNMC.
EB-2 PERM Employer-Based Sponsorship
The advantage of the EB-2 PERM category is that the employer will be able to determine whether the case will lead to approval before the case is submitted to the USCIS. However, this category has a much longer processing time, especially for those who are from countries with substantial populations.
- Employer files an application to the US Department of Labor, commonly called the PERM application. This application typically takes five – nine months to be adjudicated.
- Employer files an application to the US Citizenship and Immigration Service. This type of application can usually be submitted with Premium Processing.
- Sponsored employee files an application to the US Citizenship and Immigration Service if the priority date has been reached or if the priority date is current.
EB-2 National Interest Waiver (NIW)
This category is not employer-sponsored. In other words, employees seeking a national interest waiver may self-petition and do not need an employer to sponsor them. The advantages are that the employee can determine whether to pursue this option and pay all fees associated with this category. The total time required is less than the EB-2 PERM category. The USCIS website provides some guidance on the criteria for this category.