O-1 Visa to EB-1 Green Card For Noncitizens of Extraordinary Ability
An O-1 nonimmigrant visa is granted to individuals with extraordinary abilities in the sciences, arts, film, TV, education, business, or athletics. The O-1 visa has limitations. For example, employment is restricted only to the activities and events for which your visa was granted.
Many O-1 visa holders apply for a green card to live and work freely in the US without limitations. Are you an O-1 visa holder looking to convert an O-1 visa to an EB-1 green card? If so, Alagiri Law can help you secure your green card.
Should You Get an EB-1 Green Card?
The O-1 nonimmigrant visa is designed for foreign nationals with extraordinary achievements. If you want to live in the United States long term, try and switch your O-1 visa to a green card. O-1 visa holders can gain permanent residency in the US.
Tip: Having an O-1 is a good start because the criteria for the O-1 visa and the EB-1 green card are similar.
Considering that you already have an O-1 visa, you may be able to use some of the same documents for your EB-1A green card application. The goal is to show USCIS officials that you are an asset in your field and will continue to use your extraordinary talent in the US under EB-1 status. Therefore, we suggest building your resume and portfolio immediately if you plan to apply for an EB-1 green card within the next few years.
O-1 Visa to EB-1 Green Card Application Process
Here’s a step-by-step guide to converting your O-1 visa to an EB-1 green card. Before you apply, review the USCIS requirements for EB-1 forms and guidelines.
Step #1. The process begins by filing Form-140, Petition for Alien Worker. You are self petitioning so you would sign the form yourself. The Form I-140 can be filed under premium processing to speed up the process.
Step #2. USCIS processes the application. Current processing times are 12+ months.
Step #3. If the I-140 is approved, then you go through the process of actually applying for your green card.
If you’re already in the United States, you must file Form I-485 (Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status). An I-485 can take anywhere from 6-12 months to process, depending on which USCIS Service Center is processing the application. Note that you can file the Adjustment of Status form along with the Form I-140 or you can file the Adjustment of Status form after the Form I-140 is approved.
If your Form I-140 is approved and you live outside the U.S., then you would apply for an immigrant visa at the U.S. consulate in your home country.
If you’re an O-1 visa holder, give us a call today. We simplify the immigration process.
The Advantages of an EB-1 Green Card
While an O-1 visa can be more flexible than other nonimmigrant visas, several restrictions exist.
The benefits of applying for the EB-1 green card include the following:
● As an EB-1 green card holder, your spouse and children (unmarried or under 21) are also eligible to apply for a green card as your dependents. The O-1 visa doesn’t offer working opportunities for spouses and children.
● You don’t need a job offer or an employer. As an O-1 visa holder, you must have an employer sponsor your visa. On an EB-1, you have the freedom and flexibility regarding where to work.
● Your green card is valid for ten years, but you may be eligible to apply for US citizenship five years after obtaining the green card. With the O-1 visa, you must renew it at least once every three years.
● With a green card, you can travel in and out of the country without limitations or boundaries.
How Can an Immigration Attorney Help?
Changing an O-1 visa to an EB-1 green card is well worth it for individuals wishing to become permanent US residents. At Alagiri Law, we have extensive experience switching from an O-1 visa to an EB-1 green card. We work with you to help you understand the process, prepare any required documents, and file your petition.
To schedule a consultation, call us at 650-383-4306.