Employment Based Immigration



There are 140,000 employment-based immigration visas available each year thanks to the Immigration and Nationality Act. Unfortunately, these visas go fast. To help level the playing field, the U.S. has categorized the types of employment-based immigration visas and allocated 140,000 visas per category.

If you are seeking an employment-based visa for yourself or on behalf of a prospective employee, you can find the advocacy and counsel you need at Gambacorta Law. Our Skokie employment immigration attorneys represent clients around the world from offices in Illinois, Texas, Arizona, and Vietnam.

Ready to discuss your employment visa case? Contact our Skokie lawyers at (847) 443-9303 today.

Understanding Employment-Based Visa Preferences

There are five preference categories for employment-based immigration. Understanding these will help you determine your chances for approval and the appropriate category for your situation.

Preference categories include:

  • First Preference (EB-1) Workers receive 28.6% of the available visas each year. To qualify for this category, you must exhibit extraordinary abilities in science, art, education, athletics, or business. You can also be a professor or researcher. The requirements for this category are intense and you must prove your exceptional skills to qualify.
  • Second Preference (EB-2) This is reserved for professionals who hold an advanced degree – beyond a bachelor’s or equivalent. There are 40,000 annual visas allowed in this category.
  • Third Preference (EB-3) This is for skilled workers with a degree (such as a bachelor’s), but individuals who have the necessary training to fill roles in the U.S. without a degree may also qualify.
  • Fourth Preference (EB-4) Religious workers, retired employees of international organizations, and members of the U.S. Armed Forces qualify for the fourth preference category.
  • Fifth Preference (EB-5) Investors who can invest $1 million into a U.S.-based business and generate at least 10 U.S.-based jobs will qualify for fifth preference.

Securing Your Right to Work: The Employment Authorization Document

An Employment Authorization Document (EAD)—widely known as a “work permit”—is issued by USCIS to provide its holder a legal right to work in the United States for a certain amount of time, usually for a year. After the expiration date, you must renew your EAD. It is recommended that you apply for renewal six months before the date your current EAD is scheduled to expire.

EADs are quite similar to green cards but must not be confused with them. If you are holding an EAD, you may legally work in the United States for any employer up until the expiration date.

The categories eligible to obtain Employment Authorization include:

  • F-1 students seeking Optional Practical Training related to their studies.
  • F-1 students offered off-campus employment with sponsorship from an international organization.
  • F-1 students seeking off-campus employment because of economic hardship.
  • J-2 spouses or minor children of an exchange visitor.
  • Adjustment applicants.
  • M-1 students seeking practical training.
  • K-1 non-immigrant fiancé(e)s of a U.S. citizen or a K-2 dependent.
  • Beneficiaries of the Family Unity Program.
  • L-2 visa holders.
  • Asylees and asylum applicants.
  • Those paroled as a refugee.
  • Those qualified to participate in the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals program instituted on June 15, 2012.

Partner with a Skokie Employment-Based Immigration Lawyer

Employment-based immigration requires completion of USCIS Form I-140 as well as any supporting documentation to prove you are eligible for the preference category you select. The attorneys at Gambacorta Law can help determine your eligibility and assist you with the application.

While we cannot guarantee you will be approved due to limited visas, we can ensure your documents are accurate for future approvals.

Learn more about Employment Authorization here.

Connect with Our Skokie Immigration Attorneys

Schedule a consultation with our employment-based immigration law firm today by calling (847) 443-9303 or contacting us online.


  • Specializing in Complex Immigration Cases

  • Willing to Travel to Clients When Needed

  • Personally Been Through the Immigration Process

  • Services in Tagalog, Thai, Spanish & Vietnamese


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