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EB-2(a) - Schedule A, Group II

Precertification of Aliens of Exceptional Ability Under Schedule A, Group II

Group II of Schedule A includes the following persons:

Aliens (except for aliens in the performing arts) of exceptional ability in the sciences or arts, including college and university teachers of exceptional ability who have been practicing their science or art during the year prior to application and who intend to practice the same science or art in the United States. For purposes of this group, the term "science or art'' means any field of knowledge and/or skill with respect to which colleges and universities commonly offer specialized courses leading to a degree in the knowledge and/or skill. An alien, however, need not have studied at a college or university in order to qualify for the Group II occupation.

The one-year experience requirement applies to aliens of exceptional ability in the sciences or arts, as well as to college or university teachers. "Exceptional ability'' must be outstanding and unique and must be far greater than the normal professional standing of a scientist or artist who has received a college or university education and is also widely recognized as unique. Teachers in this category must be regarded as outstanding in their field of specialization, and be expected to impart specialized knowledge not otherwise available at the college or university to which they are destined.

The use of the term "exceptional ability" in immigration law is somewhat confusing since it is applied differently when used in the context of the employment-based second preference and than when it is used in the context of Schedule A, Group II precertification. To qualify as an alien of exceptional ability under Schedule A, Group II of the Department of Labor regulations, the individual must submit:

  • evidence which demonstrates widespread acclaim and international recognition accorded the alien by recognized experts in their field;
  • documentation showing that the alien's work in that field during the past year did, and the alien's intended work in the United States will, require exceptional ability; and
  • documentation concerning the alien from at least two of the following seven groups:
  • Documentation of the alien's receipt of internationally recognized prizes or awards for excellence in the field for which certification is sought.
  • Documentation of the alien's membership in international associations, in the field for which certification is sought, which require outstanding achievement of their members, as judged by recognized international experts in their disciplines or fields.
  • Published material in professional publications about the alien, relating to the alien's work in the field for which certification is sought, which shall include the title, date, and author of such published material.
  • Evidence of the alien's participation on a panel, or individually, as a judge of the work of others in the same or in an allied field of specialization to that for which certification is sought.
  • Evidence of the alien's original scientific or scholarly research contributions of major significance in the field for which certification is sought.
  • Evidence of the alien's authorship of published scientific or scholarly articles in the field for which certification is sought, in international professional journals or professional journals with an international circulation.
  • Evidence of the display of the alien's work, in the field for which certification is sought, at artistic exhibitions in more than one country.

Despite the similar terminology, qualifying as an alien of "exceptional ability" under the employment-based second preference is easier than qualifying as an alien of exceptional ability under Schedule A, Group II of the Department of Labor regulations. Schedule A, Group II precertification may actually be more difficult to obtain than the employment-based first preference category for aliens of "extraordinary ability". Although the "extraordinary ability" preference category requires three types of documentation, it may actually be more flexible than Schedule A, Group II. For example, the "extraordinary ability" category permits:

  • the use of nationally recognized as well as the internationally recognized prizes required for Schedule A, Group II;
  • membership in associations requiring outstanding achievement as judged by national as well as the international experts required for Schedule A, Group II; and
  • publications in professional journals or trade and other major media in addition to the international journals required for Schedule A, Group II.

The immigration attorneys of NPZ Law Group have successfully helped foreign nationals obtain EB-2(a) Extraordinary Ability visas/green cards under Schedule A, Group II. Our experienced staff members also provide support services to help immigrants and their family members with social security cards, driver's licenses, and other transfer and relocation issues.

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Our staff of immigration law professionals are sensitive to the needs of our clients and the members of their families. Many members of our staff are themselves foreign born and have family and/or friends who have gone through the immigration process. As a result, our staff of business immigration law professionals have a personal and unique approach in the processing of visas and for dealing with our foreign national clientele.

Our legal team can clearly explain how to process temporary and permanent work permits in the U.S. The Outstanding Researcher and Professor Classification Process is time-consuming and complex and our staff of business immigration law professionals can clearly explain the process in Spanish, French, Japanese, Korean, Tamil, Hindi, Slovak, Czech, Russian, Chinese, German and English.

To schedule a consultation, please feel free to contact NPZ Law Group by e-mail or call 201-670-0006.

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