EB-4 Special Immigrants

The fourth preference of the employment-based visa is called the EB-4 immigrant visa for specific individuals. While the EB-4 is sometimes referred to as the fourth preference employment-based immigrant visa, it includes Special Immigrant Juveniles. If you fall under the following categories, you may be eligible to apply for a green card as a fourth preference immigrant worker. If you are coming to the United States as a:

  • Religious Worker who works for a non-profit religious denomination in the United States
  • Special Juvenile Immigrant who is a child who has been abused, abandoned, or neglected by your parent and you have SIJ status;
  • International Broadcaster who is coming to the United States as a member of the media.
  • G-4 International Organization or NATO-6 Employee who is a retired officer, an employee of certain international organizations, or NATO;
  • International Employee of the U.S. Government Abroad;
  • Armed Forces Member;
  • Panama Canal Zone Employee;
  • Certain Physician; or
  • Afghan and Iraqi National who served as anAfghan or Iraqi translator for the U.S. government, were employed by or for the U.S. government in Iraq on or after March 20, 2003, for at least one year, or who was  an Afghan employed by the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF)

To apply you must meet certain criteria and provide credible evidentiary documentation that you meet the criteria. If you meet all filing and eligibility criteria, the Form I-360, Petition for Amerasian, Widow(er), or Special Immigrant must be filed.

Adjustment of Status Process

If you are located in the United States, you may be able to submit an adjustment of status application. Generally, this involves submitting the petition and the adjustment of status application, attending a biometrics appointment and then the final interview some months or years later. During the process you should be on the look out for any requests for more evidence as well, called RFEs. Failure to respond to these may cause a delay or denial of your application.

Before applying for the green card through the adjustment of status process you should make sure that this is the right process for you. For instance, verify there are no bars to an adjustment of status and no admissibility issues. You must have legal status and a visa must be immeditaley available to you at the time of filing. Consider applying for employment authorization (if necessary) and advanced parole. Advanced parole will allow you to travel outside of the United States during the adjustment of status application process. Each of the pieces of this process can get complicated. If you miss something or make mistakes, it could mean a delayed process or even a denial. It is important to tread carefully and be meticulous through this process.

Consular Processing

If you are outside of the United States, and the USCIS approves the petition, you will go through consular processing and a final interview at the embassy in your home country. Generally, the employer will submit the petition at the USCIS. If approved, the USCIS sends the approved petition to the National Visa Center. The National Visa Center then corresponds with you to provide documentation, fee payments and to complete the DS-260 immigrant visa application. Then the embassy in your home country schedules the final interview and provides you instructions to do the medical examination and obtain a police certificate in your country. The officer will review all documentation and your application at the final interview and inform you of the decision at the interview.

When considering whether to go through with this type of green card application, it is important to take other circumstances and factors into consideration. Failing to do this may cause complications during the application process. For instance, any facts that involve previous denials, past immigration and criminal violations, previous marriages that involved filings, entry with other types of visas, tax issues, visa overstays, and previous employment in the United States can be just as important as the basic eligibility criteria. A single criminal violation, whether a misdemeanor or more serious, can lead you to be inadmissible to the United States, which may require additional steps to get a green card, such as a waiver.

It is important to consult an experienced immigration attorney to assist you with your case. An attorney will assist with preparing the petition, assist with gathering evidence, and advocate vigorously for you during the process. Here at ST Law Office, I have dedicated my practice solely to immigration matters. I vigorously advocate no matter how simple or complicated the matter. Don’t hesitate to call us at 561-405-4889 or to schedule your initial phone, online or in-person consultation now.