EB-1A Visa Frequently Asked Questions

What is the EB-1A visa for?

The EB-1A visa is for individuals with extraordinary ability in fields such as science, art, education, business, or athletics, who want to become lawful permanent residents (green card holders) in the U.S.

How can I demonstrate "extraordinary ability"?

You must provide extensive documentation showing sustained national or international acclaim and recognition in your field, such as awards, publications, or other notable achievements.

Do I need a job offer to apply for an EB-1A visa?

No, you do not need a specific job offer or employer sponsorship to apply for an EB-1A visa. It is a self-petitioning category.

What are the main criteria for the EB-1A visa?

You need to meet at least three out of ten criteria to qualify, including evidence of awards, publications, significant contributions to your field, and a substantial body of work.

How long does the EB-1A visa application process take?

Processing times can vary, but it generally takes several months to receive a decision on your EB-1A petition and longer for consular processing if you are outside the United States. If you apply for premium processing it will take two weeks.

Can I include my family members in the EB-1A application?

Yes, you can include your spouse and unmarried children under 21 in your EB-1A application. They can obtain green cards as derivative beneficiaries.

Can I apply for an EB-1A visa while in the U.S. on a different visa status?

Yes, you can apply for an EB-1A visa while in the U.S. on a different visa status. You can also apply if you are outside the U.S.

Can I apply for a green card (permanent residency) directly with the EB-1A visa?

Yes, the EB-1A visa is an employment-based immigrant visa category that leads to lawful permanent residency (a green card) without the need for a labor certification or employer sponsorship.

Can I work for any employer in the U.S. with an EB-1A visa?

Yes, once you receive your green card through the EB-1A category, you are not restricted to a specific employer or job. You have the freedom to work for any employer or start your own business.

Can I travel outside the U.S. while my EB-1A petition is pending?

Yes, you can travel while your petition is pending, but you should have the necessary travel documents, and it’s essential to ensure that you don’t jeopardize your immigration status.
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Vaibhav Singh
Vaibhav Singh
Davidson Law Group provided exceptional service for my EAD extension process. Communication was clear, and they were always available to address any queries promptly. The entire process was smooth, and their expertise in immigration law ensured a hassle-free experience. I highly recommend them for anyone seeking reliable immigration legal services.
Davidson Law Group has been exceptional in handling my L1-A visa process. Jennifer has been meticulous in gathering the required documents and processing the file. Leyla has thorough knowledge and expertise on immigration laws and can help with any of the concerns. Overall it has been an outstanding experience. Thanks
Ross Gregory
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Tony Montana
Tony Montana
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Vishnu Prashanth
Vishnu Prashanth
My deepest gratitude for the outstanding support and guidance I received during the visa extension and stamping process. Davidson Law Group team, and particularly Leyla, went above and beyond to ensure a smooth and successful experience.Navigating visa-related matters can be daunting, but with Leyla's assistance and the overall support from your firm, I felt confident and well-informed throughout. Leyla provided tremendous support at every step, answering my queries promptly and offering valuable insights that significantly eased the process. The meticulous attention to detail and personalized service I received have left a lasting impression.I am truly grateful for the exceptional service provided by the Davidson Law Group. The team's commitment to client satisfaction and expertise in immigration matters have undoubtedly made a significant impact on my journey.Thank you once again for your invaluable assistance. I look forward to recommending your services to others in need of legal guidance.
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Harsimran Kaur

Dana Davidson - Full Bio

Dana T. Davidson holds degrees from the Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law and State University of New York at Stony Brook and has been practicing immigration law since 2003 in New York and nationwide. She represents corporations, individuals, and families in a broad range of immigration matters. Attorney Davidson has offices in New York City and Glen Cove.


  • Benjamin N. Cardozo School of Law, Yeshiva University, New York, New York
  • Juris Doctor – 1988
  • Honors: Moot Court Board, Member, Judge
  • State University of New York at Stony Brook, Stony Brook, New York
  • Bachelor of Arts – 1982
  • Major: Political Science
  • Concentration: Business

Pro-Bono Activities

  • Safe Passage Project, Volunteer Attorney, 2013-Present
  • Educating the Educators, Founder, 2012-Present
  • Momentum Project, Board Member, 1991-1994 Bar Admission
  • New York, Eastern District
  • New York, Southern District
  • Washington, D.C.

Speaking Engagements
  • AILA RDC-EMEA Spring Conference 2018, Berlin, Germany, Speaker on “Public Charge” panel
  • AILA RDC-EMEA Fall Conference 2018, Johannesburg, South Africa, Speaker: “Practice Management in the New Age” panel
  • AILA RDC-EMEA Spring Conference 2018, Madrid, Spain, Speaker: “El Traje de Luces: Self-Sponsored Petitions – EB-1A and NIW”  AILA RDC-EMEA Spring Conference 2017, Brussels, Belgium, Speaker: “Continuing Blanket L Challenges”
  • Safe Passage Project, March 2017, Speaker: “Representing Unaccompanied Minors: Special Immigrant Juvenile Status and the Effects of President Trump’s Executive Orders on Immigration”
  • AILA RDC-EMEA Fall Conference 2016, Speaker: “It’s Not About Money: I-864”
  • AILA RDC-EMEA Spring Conference 2016, Vienna, Austria, Speaker: “K-Visa: Differences Between K-1 and I-130 Processing”
  • New York Institute of Technology’s Center for Entrepreneurship, January 2016, Entrepreneur/Executive-in-Residence
  • AILA Fall Conference 2015, London, UK, Speaker: Impact of joint sponsors on family-based cases
  • Goldman-Sachs 10,000 Small Business Education Program, October 2014, “What is required to grow a business?”
  • Dowling College, May 2013, Keynote Speaker at the first annual Latino Summit at Dowling College
  • International Taxation Conference, 2010