USCIS Expands Acceptable Evidence for EB-1 Extraordinary Ability and Outstanding Scholar/Faculty Petitions | Gibney Anthony & Flaherty, LLP

United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has updated its policy manual to expand acceptable evidence under the published material criteria for Extraordinary Ability and EB-1 Outstanding Scholar/Faculty applications. , as well as acceptable evidence to meet the “leading or critical role” played for the criteria of a “distinguished” institution as applied to EB-1 extraordinary ability petitions.


  • Compared to “published material” about the recipient as applied to EB-1 Extraordinary Ability and Outstanding Scholar/Teacher petitions: this evidence need not be a printed article or book/chapter, and more varied evidence is acceptable, including a transcript of the audio or video coverage of the recipient or the recipient’s work.
  • As regards the evidence establishing that the beneficiary played a role “prominent or critical role” for a “prominent” institution as applied to EB-1 Extraordinary Ability Requests: This evidence need not be limited to roles indicating that the recipient is (or was) a leader within the overall organization or institution. Rather, the recipient can demonstrate that they have held a leading or critical role for a division or department thereof.


The expansion of acceptable evidence for these EB-1 petitions is yet another step taken by the Biden-Harris administration to recognize the diverse and dynamic ways in which professionals of extraordinary ability and exceptional scholars/faculty distinguish themselves in their professional fields. While these policy updates are not limited to science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) professionals, they closely follow a recent policy update from the Biden administration. -Harris to provide clarity and flexibility for EB-2 national interest waiver requests related to STEM fields. Together, these policy updates provide greater access to EB-1 and EB-2 petition approvals and ultimately obtaining a green card.

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