CLIENT: Automotive Designer


Obtaining a Green Card for an Extraordinary Automotive Designer


Jane Doe


Luxury & Sports Automotive Design


NIW Approved


We were approached to explore permanent immigration options for an automotive designer who was working in the US for an international automotive brand on a non-immigrant visa. During the client interview we evaluated several routes to permanent residency. At the time of consultation, the Biden Administration had recently released updated guidance on the National Interest Waiver, followed by USCIS Policy Memo updates. This was an encouraging sea-change considering the shroud of mystery and inconsistency that previously plagued the EB-2 NIW process. 

“Jane” possessed a dual Master’s degree as well as nearly two decades of experience in her field. The EB-1A was also an option, but considering the inconsistencies in those adjudications we concluded that the National Interest Waiver would be the most suitable route. 

EB-2 National Interest Waiver (NIW) Overview

EB-2 Category Basic Requirements:

  • Advanced Degree or Unique Expertise: The applicant must hold an advanced degree (or a foreign equivalent) or demonstrate exceptional ability in their field (sciences, arts, or business). Exceptional ability means a degree of expertise significantly above that ordinarily encountered.
  • National Interest Waiver (NIW) Specific Requirements:
    • Benefit to the U.S.: The foreign national’s proposed endeavor must have both substantial merit and national importance. This can be in a range of areas including, but not limited to, business, entrepreneurialism, science, technology, health, education, or culture.
    • Well-Positioned to Advance the Proposed Endeavor: The applicant must be well-positioned to advance the proposed endeavor. This means that the applicant should be able to demonstrate, based on their record, that they are likely to succeed in their area of expertise and thus benefit the U.S.
    • Beneficial to the U.S. to Waive the Requirement: The U.S. would benefit from waiving the standard requirement of a job offer and, therefore, the labor certification. In essence, it must be demonstrated that it’s in the U.S. interest to grant the waiver because the applicant’s contributions are so significant.

Additional Points:

  • Labor Certification Waiver: One of the main advantages of the NIW is that the applicant can bypass the labor certification process, which can be time-consuming and cumbersome.
  • Self-petitioning: Eligible candidates can self-petition, meaning they don’t need an employer to sponsor their visa application.
  • Diverse Fields of Endeavor: While traditionally popular among scientists and researchers, the NIW can be pursued by professionals in a wide variety of fields, as long as they can demonstrate that their work is of “national interest”.

It’s important to remember that the EB-2 NIW process can be complex and subjective. Each application is unique, and the success often hinges on the quality of evidence provided and the argument made for the national interest. Consulting with an immigration attorney who has experience with NIW petitions can be beneficial.


    There is a common impression that EB-2 National Interest Waiver petitions are only suitable for scientists or researchers with extensive publications. However, this is not the case. The regulations and controlling case law make it clear that a vast array of professionals are eligible for the category so long as they meet the criteria. Below we outline the argument for this particular client: 

    1. Whether the Proposed Field of Endeavor has Substantial Merit or National Importance: 

    In the case we reviewed, the specific endeavor had created both a positive environmental and economic impact at the national level within the United States and internationally in the relevant field. This had contributed to the advancement of global environmental sustainability and protection initiatives. The individual in question had been exceptionally skilled, with years of experience in the specialized area of sustainable design, which was undeniably of substantial intrinsic merit. The endeavors proposed by this individual had both national and international implications. We had argued that the petitioner had shown an intent to continue work in the promotion, conceptualization, and production of sustainable materials and design for current and future automotive technology.

    Path Law Group is proud to have represented Saumya Bhatnagar and played a role in her journey to obtaining a green card. As an accomplished entrepreneur and advocate for the transformative power of technology, Saumya embodies the spirit of innovation and determination that Path Law Group is committed to supporting.

    2. Whether the  Applicant is Well-Positioned to Advance the Proposed Endeavor:

    To ascertain if the individual was well-positioned to advance the proposed endeavor, several factors were considered. These encompassed the individual’s education, skills, record of success in related areas, future plans, progress made in the endeavor, and interest shown by relevant entities or individuals in her exceptional skills. According to Matter of Dhanasar, 26 I&N Dec. 884 (AAO 2016), these criteria played a pivotal role.

    The individual’s credentials were impressive. She held advanced degrees in design from reputed institutions in Europe. With over two decades of professional experience in sustainable design, she had earned a scholarship to further her studies. The individual’s contributions to major design and architecture firms were significant, including roles at internationally recognized automotive design studios. Her innovative work, especially in sustainable design for the automotive industry, had a profound impact. Her focus on sustainability, evidenced by collaborations with elite companies and sustainable material suppliers, made her an invaluable asset in the drive toward more environmentally-friendly automobiles.

    Throughout her career, the individual had achieved recognition at global events and had received prestigious design awards. Furthermore, expert letters and collaborations with leading organizations, including top-tier automotive companies, testified to the importance and impact of her work. The individual’s comprehensive education, vast experience, significant role in award-winning projects, and continued interest from industry giants positioned her exceptionally well in her field of sustainable design.

    3. Whether it Would be Beneficial to the United States to Waive the Requirements of a Job Offer and thus a Labor Certification 

    To evaluate if it would be in the national interest to waive the individual’s job offer requirements and associated labor certification, several criteria were taken into account. These factors include: the feasibility for the individual to secure a job offer or for the petitioner to obtain a labor certification due to the specific nature of her qualifications or proposed endeavor; the potential benefit the United States would receive from her contributions, even if other qualified U.S. workers are available; and the urgency of the national interest in her contributions, making it compelling to bypass the labor certification process, as referenced in Matter of Dhanasar, 26 I&N Dec. 884 (AAO 2016).

    From the information presented, it was evident that waiving the job offer and labor certification requirements would benefit the United States. The petitioner had an advanced degree aligned with the proposed endeavor and demonstrated notable expertise in a niche domain, sustainable design. The significance of research and technological advancements in sustainable design within the automotive industry holds potential impacts for U.S. national competitiveness. Moreover, her contributions in this field were so crucial that they would serve the national interest considerably more than those of another U.S. worker with similar qualifications. This significance was further underscored by her continued association with major U.S.-based organizations that recognized the value of her expertise. Given her history of impactful research in areas promoting U.S. interests, the country would derive substantial benefits from her continued contributions, even if other qualified U.S. workers were available.

    In support of her contributions, evidence highlighted her award-winning work showcased at top-tier technology conferences. The relevance and importance of her findings, especially in relation to U.S. educational interests, indicated that she engaged in activities with profound impacts on sustainability and design education, further benefiting elite institutions. Lastly, her work had garnered public interest within the U.S., with numerous prominent publications and media outlets covering her significant contributions.


    We are proud to say our client’s NIW petition was approved by USCIS. She is now awaiting completion of her permanent residency process.