Myth: Only scientific researchers are eligible to file National Interest
Truth: NIW is a special classification in second employment-based category (
Eb-2). This classification is available to individuals of exceptional
ability or persons with advanced degree (M.A., M.S., M.E., M.D., J.D. or Ph.
D.) in SCIENCE, ARTS, and BUSINESS. Although the vast majority of NIW
approvals are given to scientific researchers, a substantial number of NIW
approvals also go to artists, writers, entrepreneurs, athletes, musicians,
performers, educators, and even chefs.
Myth: If I work in a field such as medical research, military technology or
energy research, my NIW petition can be easily approved.
Truth: The area of your research is mostly irrelevant to the merit of an NIW
petition. No matter how important your work is, you must prove that your
specific prior achievements justify the projection that your future
contribution to the U.S. national interest is substantially higher than that
of your peers.
Myth: Approval of NIW petition totally relies on luck because some weak
cases were approved while strong cases were denied.
Truth: While some USICS adjudicators have discretion on NIW cases and from
time to time make erroneous decisions, approvals of NIW in general do not
rely on luck. Professional presentation of a case after meeting the basic
requirements is crucial.
Myth: I cannot file NIW petition because I am not able to obtain letters of
recommendation from government agencies.
Truth: While supporting letters from government agencies are helpful, they
are not required. The vast majority of successful NIW petitions are
submitted without the endorsement from government agencies.
Myth: Regarding the number of letters of recommendation, the more the better.
Truth: The quality of letters of recommendation is more important than the
quantity. Excessive documentation with large number of letters repeating the
same language does not help a case.
Myth: I am not qualified to file NIW because my publications have not cited
by other researchers.
Truth: Many researchers whose publications received no or moderate citations
have been granted NIW. Citation is one of the factors to be considered in
NIW adjudication, but not the only factor that impacts the outcome of an NIW
Myth: I work in an area that closely relates to the US national interest, so
my NIW petition will be approved.
Truth: What really matters in NIW petition is to prove your past
achievements justify the projection that you will contribute to the U.S.
national interest at a substantially higher degree than a U.S. worker with
comparable education and experience.
Myth: If my NIW petition is denied, I cannot file it again in the future.
Truth: Denial of NIW petition is “non-prejudicial”, which means, among
other things, that it will not bar the petitioner from filing a new petition
in the same classification.
Myth: I’d better enclose as many documents as possible to make the NIW
petition package thicker and heavier.
Truth: There is a thin but crucial line between proper documentation and
excessive documentation. One of the disadvantages of the latter is that the
real shining points of your case may be buried in the bulk of irrelevant or
little relevant documents.
Myth: USCIS will approve my NIW petition if I can prove that researchers
with my expertise cannot be found in the US.
Truth: The law is crystal clear that NIW cannot be granted based on labor
shortage. If there is a labor shortage in your field, you will be asked to
take the labor certification route.
Myth: My advisor or supervisor must write a letter of recommendation to
support my NIW petition.
Truth: While a letter signed by your advisor or supervisor may be helpful,
it is not required. Many successfully NIW petitions were not endorsed by the
petitioner’s advisor or supervisor.
Myth: My NIW petition will be approved if I can show that my H-1B will reach
the six year limit and my departure from the US will be a loss to my
Truth: While this argument does not hurt, it is unlikely to help either. NIW
cannot be granted based on the imminent expiration of your non-immigrant
status. Again what really matters in NIW petition is that your past
achievements justify the projection that you will contribute to the national
interest at a substantially higher degree than a US worker with the same
刘宗坤律师（Z. Zac Liu, Esq.），法学博士（J.D., Valparaiso University School
of Law）、哲学博士(Ph.D., Peking University)，伊利诺伊州最高法院及联邦法院
执照，曾担任Valparaiso University Law Review的编辑和审稿人， 著有中英文书籍
白凯玲律师 (Kellie Pai, Esq.)，法学博士(J.D.，University of Houston Law
Center)、文学学士(B.A., University of Texas at Austin)，德克萨斯州最高法院执
Christina T. Le 律师，法学博士(J.D.，University of Houston Law Center)、文学
学士(B.A., Northwestern University)，德克萨斯州最高法院执照，联邦法院执照，
曾任Department of Justice驻Houston移民法庭Attorney Advisor，现任刘宗坤联合律
Sabrina Ong律师，法学博士 (J.D., Michigan State University College of Law)、
文学学士 (B.A., Oklahoma State University)，密西根州最高法院执照，曾任
Michigan State University Law Review编辑，密西根上诉法院Prehearing Research
Liu & Associates, PLLC
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