Professionals from these countries achieved the most EB-1 and EB-2 approvals in 2020
The United States Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) compiles data each fiscal year on the number of employment-based green card petitions that it has approved for professionals. The 2020 data was released in January 2021, and it revealed that a total of 79,600 Form I-140 petitions were approved in the EB-1, first preference, and EB-2, second preference categories.
As only a fraction of the Form I-140 green card petitions are approved because they meet the EB-1 or EB-2 criteria, one can only imagine how many submissions were received by USCIS. It is a partial explanation for the lengthy USCIS processing times, and COVID-19, of course, is another reason for delayed green card processing.
EB-1 and EB-2 Green Card Approvals for India and China
As with most prior years, foreign workers from India and China topped the number of approved Form I-140 petitions in both the first and second preferences. In fact, foreign nationals from these two countries garnered more than half of the EB-1 approvals. Professionals from India alone received almost 58% of the EB-2 approvals.
It is important to note; however, that only a portion of these EB-1 and EB-2 approvals were gained without a American company extending a job offer to the green card candidate after the organization acquired a labor certification to show that the worker was accepting a position that was hard to fill.
Only the EB-1A Extraordinary Ability green card and the EB-2 National Interest Waiver categories allow an immigrant worker to gain lawful permanent residency without a job offer. Although none of the EB-1 first preference green cards require a labor certification, the EB-1B, for outstanding professors and researchers, and the EB-1C, which is reserved for certain multinational managers and executives, do have a job offer as a prerequisite.
Top 6 Countries of Origin for EB-1 Awardees in 2020
In addition to India and China, there were four other countries of origin whose citizens scored more than 500 EB-1 approvals from USCIS in 2020. The list is as follows:
Eight Countries Whose Professionals Achieved More than 500 EB-2 Approvals in 2020
For the second preference EB-2 green card, which includes professionals who had a job offer and labor certification, as well as those who received a National Interest Waiver, there were eight countries of origin that had more than 500 workers get approved by USCIS. The list is as follows:
There are several nations of origin that appeared high on the EB-2 list that did not make as well a showing on the EB-1 list. These include South Korea, Iran, and Taiwan. However, it is important to note that individuals from these countries have a current visa priority date on the March 2021 visa bulletin in both the first and second preference categories. Hence, many qualified candidates from these nations may have opted for the EB-2 over the EB-1 petition.
Contact us about your EB-1A or EB-2 NIW green card petition
Gallagher Domanski Legal Services is a fully remote, boutique immigration law firm in the San Fernando Valley area of Los Angeles. We are a flat-fee law firm that is focused only on green cards in the EB-1A and EB-2 National Interest Waiver categories.
If you would like a free CV evaluation to assess the appropriateness of an I-140 green card petition for you, feel free to contact us on our website, or you can send an email to Jean P. Domanski, Esq.