National Interest Waiver – FAQ

Q: What is the National Interest Waiver?

A: An alien may apply for permanent residence status (Green Card) and seek a waiver of the offer of employment by establishing that his (her) admission to permanent residence would be in the National Interest.

There is no rule or statutory standard as to what will qualify an alien for a National Interest Waiver. The USCIS considers each case on an individual basis.

The procedure is to file the case with evidence to establish that the alien’ s admission to the United States for Permanent Residence would be in the national interest.

Q: Who qualifies?

A: Factors that have been considered in successful cases include:

The aliens admission will improve the U.S. economy.

The aliens admission will improve wages and working conditions of U.S. Workers.

The aliens admission will improve educational and training programs for U.S. children and underqualified workers.

The aliens admission will provide more affordable housing for young, aged, or poor U.S. residents.

The aliens admission will improve the U.S. environment and lead to more productive use of the national resources.

The aliens admission is requested by an interested U.S. government agency.

Many of our cases in which National Interest Waivers have been approved were supported by affidavits from well-known, established and influential people or organizations.

For example, an application being submitted for a scientist should contain affidavits from leading scientists, representatives, and from other organizations associated with the type of research to be pursued.

Documenting past achievements, as well as proof that the alien has already created jobs, turned around a business or created an increase in exports or other economic improvements should prove instrumental in gaining approval.

Q. What Is An Advanced Degree?

A: According to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) regulations, an “advanced degree” means any U.S. academic or professional degree or a foreign equivalent degree above that of baccalaureate.

A U.S. baccalaureate degree or a foreign equivalent degree followed by at least five years of progressive experience in the specialty shall be considered the equivalent of a master’s degree.

Q: What is NYSDOT?

In the 1998 decision New York State Department of Transportation (“NYSDOT”), the Administrative Appeals Office of the former INS imposed additional eligibility requirements for the NIW category.

Specifically, NYSDOT established a three-part test to determine whether an alien meets these requirements. These requirements are as follows:

1) The alien must seek employment in an area that has substantial intrinsic merit. NYSDOT does not provide guidance on how to determine whether an area of employment is of substantial intrinsic merit;

2) It must be demonstrated that the proposed benefit will be national in scope; and

3) It must demonstrated that the national interest would be adversely affected if the employer is required to undergo the labor certification process, specifically in that

a) The applicant would serve the national interest “to a substantially greater degree” than an available U.S. worker having the same minimal qualifications, and

b) The applicant has a record of achievements “with some degree of influence on the field as a whole”, as demonstrated by a “history of valuable contribution” and a “critical role” in ongoing work in the field which has practical significance.

In order to satisfy the third component of the test, it must be shown “that it would be contrary to the national interest to potentially deprive the prospective Employer of the services of the alien by making the position sought available to U.S. workers.”

In addition, NYSDOT further requires “that the alien will serve the national interest to a substantially greater degree than would an available U.S. worker having the same minimum qualifications.”  This third prong of NYSDOT is the most subjective and challenging to satisfy.


If you have a general National Interest Waiver Green Card question, please use the form below. We will do our best to answer it for you:

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National Interest Waiver – Overview

National Interest Waiver – FAQ

National Interest Waiver – Attorney Services

Substantial Intrinsic Merit – The first NIW requirement

National Interest Waiver Green Card – Step by Step Kit

Client Reviews

I've had the pleasure of conducting business with this law firm for the last 10 years. They have been nothing but the best for every aspect of immigration need I had. From F1 all the way to citizenship. They're probably the most affordable, knowledgeable, and most efficient immigration law firm out there. Plus, they always provide responses to questions in a very timely manner. Trust me, other immigration law firms will cost you an arm and a leg for the same or less of a service compared to this law firm. Give them a call, check out their website. You will not regret it.
Andy Glasgow
Andy Glasgow
17:26 27 Mar 17
Because of John and his team my wife and I were able to travel back to the states, get married and have a Green Card without any headaches. John’s efforts were amazing and it shows because my wife and I didn’t have to go to the Green card interview. We had a strong enough case to receive the Green card in the mail. If you’re seeking a Lawyer that will be impartial, he’s your guy.
T M
T M
19:18 23 Feb 17
Me & husband went through immigration process which thankfully was made easy with the help and services of Marc Tyler Inc. Our direct contact was John which i want to personally say Thank You ! The service provided was efficient, fast, affordable prompt answers in a timely fashion. I would recommend Marc Tyler Inc to anyone who need immigration done fast, easy, friendly & with no hidden charges.
Aleksandra Stoycheva
Aleksandra Stoycheva
15:27 26 Jan 17
I could not have asked for better service. I will definitely be coming back to get the green card process done. The fees are extremely reasonable and they stick with their clients the entire way. I had so many questions during this process, and each one of them were answered very quickly and with out most professionalism. This firm is a pleasure to work with and I highly recommend them to anyone.
bryan mowrey
bryan mowrey
06:41 25 Nov 16
Marc and John Dorer worked on our case to file for AOS after our L1A was approved.Marc and John are professionals and extremely reasonable-priced. The reason they are able to cut the price is because they don't spend time consulting you or guiding you and will never get on call.All communications are email only, so if you know precisely what you want they will do all the paper-work, follow the trail and get the job done. If you are confused and need advice and consulting, they may not be the right lawyers.But since we were doing our AOS, it worked out perfectly well and they did their job extremely professionally.Would recommend them every time to get the work done.
hardik parikh
hardik parikh
01:58 08 Feb 17
At first I thought I could have very well gone through the green card application process on my own and saved all lawyer fees. Its funny how some lawyers can charge in excess of 2K for this. However at Taylor and Associates the price seemed more reasonable and felt it made sense to go with one at that price. There were some doubts that arose in our mind which they cleared in a timely manner and seemed very knowledgeable in this area. Its for moments like these when having a professional around helps. While we can get busy with our lives and with laws constantly changing, I would definitely recommend them - a small price to pay for peace of mind.
Callistus Pereira
Callistus Pereira
17:51 06 Jun 17
I am US citizen. We hired Marc's firm for my wife's Green Card process, We are extremely happy with their services.They are one of the best service providers in the country. Price is very affordable. John is awesome. He responded to our queries on time with very useful information. We highly recommend this firm to anybody looking for affordable and the best immigration services. it was an awesome experience working with this team.
Narsimha M
Narsimha M
13:57 04 Aug 17
Mark and team went above all my expectations of an 'online' service agency I went in with very low expectations to match the low cost of the service and was amazed that the experience was no different than going through an expensive attorney. They were very prompt on responses, very patient and also very knowledgeable on every facet of the application (including a follow up checklist). I would highly recommend them considering the low cost they charge and the high risk we take by doing this ourselves
First Dhalsite
First Dhalsite
22:27 01 Sep 17
USVISANOW streamlined the paperwork which saved us so much time. This also reduced the stress involved in filling out the paperwork. They also are very understanding and respond very quickly to questions and emails. Jackline is now a US citizen which took less than 5 months. Thank you Mr. Taylor and your team. From Brian and Jacky.
Jackline Osero
Jackline Osero
17:32 12 Sep 17
The best law agency I have ever worked with. Very responsive, experienced. I trusted my green process to them and it was done perfectly without and issues in minimum possible period. Thank You Very much Marc, John and others!!!
Hrach Gyulzadyan
Hrach Gyulzadyan
16:38 30 Sep 17
My husband and I worked with John Dorer from Marc Taylor's office, and his services exceeded our expectations. He was very knowledgeable, responsive, and our Green Card process and interview from start to finish went smoothly. Thank you so much, John, for your dedication to our case and all your help. I would highly recommend USAVISANOW to all!
Sophia Nguyen
Sophia Nguyen
17:26 09 Oct 17
Marc and John helped me apply and get my green card. They are very specific about needed documents and other details. Also, they are very responsive when you have a question. I know I emailed them several times just to ask questions that I could have found answers online myself. They are very patient and professional. If you want to get great services with reasonable fees contact them!
Amin Bagheri
Amin Bagheri
11:54 12 Oct 17

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