What are the categories of employment-based (“EB”) immigrant visas?
The EB preference system has five categories, with each to receive a set percentage of the total quota:
First preference (EB-1)
- individuals with extraordinary ability
- outstanding researchers and professors, and
- multinational managers and executives.
Second preference (EB-2)
- individuals who hold advanced degrees or the equivalent,
- individuals with exceptional ability, and
- individuals who are issued national interest waivers.
Third preference (EB-3)
- skilled workers, and
- other workers.
Fifth preference (EB-5)
- individuals who create employment by investing in or opening a new enterprise.
Is there a numerical limit on EB visas?
Yes – there are 140,000 employment-based immigrant visas available each year as a standard. This may be slightly higher, being supplemented with any unused IVs from the previous fiscal year for family-based (FB) petitions.
Is there a limit on the number of EB visas available to each country?
Yes. An annual limitation of 7% per country is applied. The limitation per country is with the need to avoid monopolization in mind.