To be considered for an immigrant visa under some of the employment-based categories, the applicant’s prospective employer or agent must first obtain a labor certification approval from the Department of Labor. Once received (if required), the employer then files an Immigrant Petition for Alien Worker, Form I-140, with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) for the appropriate employment-based preference category. (NOTE: Persons with extraordinary abilities in the Employment First preference category are able to file their own petitions.)
Every fiscal year (October 1st – September 30th), approximately 140,000 employment-based immigrant visas are made available to qualified applicants under the provisions of U.S. immigration law. Employment based immigrant visas are divided into five preference categories. Certain spouses and children may accompany or follow-to-join employment-based immigrants. You can learn more about these five categories of employment-based immigrant visas on usvisas.state.gov.
To apply for an employment-based immigrant visa, follow the steps on the Immigrant Visa Process on usvisas.state.gov. Once you have completed those steps, review the instructions given to you by the National Visa Center (NVC), along with the information presented on this website, for further guidance and instructions.
U.S. immigration law makes visas available to immigrant investors seeking to enter the United States to engage in new commercial enterprises that benefit the U.S. economy through job creation and capital investment. E5 investors receive up to 7.1 percent of all employment based immigrant visas issued worldwide each year. For detailed information on application procedures, please visit https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/us-visas/immigrate/employment-based-immigrant-visas.html
Special Immigrant Visas
There are other special categories of employment based immigrant visas. For more information, please visit https://travel.state.gov/content/visas/en/immigrate.html