Advantages of a National Interest Waiver, transitioning to EB-1, entrepreneurship, and H-4 employment for spouse

Question details

I entered the US to complete my Masters on an F-1 visa in 2018, I got my H1B visa approved in Oct 2022. I was planning to go for a green card through the EB2 NIW route. I have a few questions, which are as follows:

1. Suppose that I got EB2 NIW approved and I am waiting in queue for a green card, but I went back to India and worked in India (employer may or may not be related to the US). Can I collect my GC whenever the priority date becomes current?

2. Suppose that I have already applied for an EB2 NIW visa but then I build my profile and want to apply for an EB1 visa, can I do that?

3. When can I start my business/startup during the EB2 NIW application process? or Do I need to wait until the visa is approved to start a business?

4. When can my wife start working on an H4 visa? Is it during the EB2 NIW application process? Does she need to wait until the visa is approved?


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FAQ Transcript

With an approved EB-2 NIW, even if you work in India in an unrelated job, you can still collect your green card as long as you intend to work in the field for which you got the NIW when you arrive in the US. Additionally, you can apply for an EB-1 and transfer the priority date from NIW to EB-1. Starting a business during the EB-2 NIW process depends on various factors, but there's no interim visa except for limited options like entrepreneurial parole. However, potential changes in H-1B regulations for entrepreneurs could provide extended H-1B options and the ability to work for your own business. Spouses can start working on H-4 once the NIW is approved and the H-4 EAD application is filed, as the NIW I-140 petition approval doesn't require a visa.


Nonimmigrant Visas