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What Qualifies as Exceptional Ability?

The term "exceptional ability" is defined as a level of expertise or specialization significantly above the "normal" found in the fields of science, arts, or business. To qualify, the beneficiary must also bring substantial benefit to the national economy, cultural interests, or educational endeavors of the country. This standard is one level below the classification of extraordinary ability (which we will explain in a subsequent post).


The initial evidence required to apply for this type of visa through exceptional ability must include at least three of the six types of evidence listed in the regulations:


An official academic record showing that the beneficiary holds a degree, diploma, certificate, or similar award from a college, university, school, or other educational institution related to the field of exceptional ability.

Evidence in the form of letter(s) from current or previous employer(s) showing that the beneficiary has at least 10 years of full-time experience in the occupation for which they are being sought.

A license to practice the profession or certification for a specific profession or occupation.

Evidence that the beneficiary has received salary or other compensation for services demonstrating exceptional ability.

Evidence of membership in professional associations.

Evidence of recognition for significant achievements and contributions to the industry or field by peers, government entities, or professional or commercial organizations.


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