Mastering the EB1C Green Card Process: Eligibility, Steps, and Current Timelines

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Picture of Shawn Sedaghat, Esq.

Shawn Sedaghat, Esq.

Navigating the EB1C green card process can feel like solving a complex puzzle, with each piece representing a crucial step towards your goal of living and working in the United States.

This guide breaks down the EB1C eligibility criteria, outlines the application steps, and helps you understand the latest processing dates and Visa Bulletin updates.

Staying informed can make your path smoother and help you avoid unnecessary delays.

Keep reading to gain a comprehensive understanding of the EB1C immigration process.

Key Takeaways

  • The EB1C Green Card is for multinational managers or executives who can prove their essential role in their company.
  • Labor certification is not required for EB1C applicants, simplifying the initial process.
  • Understanding the Visa Bulletin’s “Employment-Based Preferences” chart is vital for tracking your priority date.
  • Using the USCIS Online Case Status Portal helps applicants stay updated on their application’s progress.
  • Partnering with an experienced immigration lawyer can significantly ease the EB1C application process.

Understanding EB1C Green Card Eligibility

The EB1C green card is designed for those at the helm of multinational companies, specifically managers and executives. It’s not just about holding a high title but proving your pivotal role in global operations.

Who Can Apply?

To qualify for the EB1C green card, you must:

  • Have at least one year of managerial or executive experience with a company that has a qualifying relationship with a U.S. business.
  • Have been employed outside the U.S. for at least one year in the three years preceding your petition or before your U.S. residence if already in the U.S.
  • The role abroad should closely mirror the position you’re aiming for in the U.S., involving significant decision-making responsibilities.

Documenting Your Eligibility

To prove your eligibility, you’ll need:

  • A detailed letter from your overseas employer confirming your managerial or executive role and one-year tenure.
  • Organizational charts showing your position and influence within the company.
  • Performance reviews, awards, or other recognitions demonstrating your contributions.

The EB1C Application Process

The EB1C application process, while streamlined by the lack of a labor certification requirement, involves several detailed steps.

Starting with Labor Certification Exemption

Unlike other employment-based green cards, the EB1C doesn’t require labor certification, allowing you to proceed directly to filing Form I-140, Immigrant Petition for Alien Worker.

Filing Form I-140

Form I-140 is critical, showcasing your qualifications and the necessity of your role. This form establishes your priority date, marking your place in the processing queue.

Choosing Between Adjustment of Status and Consular Processing

You have two pathways:

  • Adjustment of Status: For those already in the U.S., allowing you to change your visa status without leaving the country.
  • Consular Processing: For applicants outside the U.S., involving an interview at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate.

Handling Requests for Evidence (RFEs)

An RFE isn’t a rejection but a request for more information. Respond promptly and thoroughly, providing additional documents or clarifications to strengthen your application.

The Ultimate Guide to Green Card Processing Times

Keeping Track of EB1C Processing Times

Processing times can vary, and staying updated is crucial.

Checking Form I-140 Processing Dates

Regularly check the USCIS website for the latest processing times for Form I-140. These times can fluctuate based on the USCIS workload.

Understanding Adjustment of Status or Visa Interview Timelines

  • Adjustment of Status: Typically takes 8-14 months, depending on the USCIS caseload and your country of origin.
  • Visa Interview: Usually scheduled 4-9 months after petition approval, depending on the consular workload.

Monitoring the Visa Bulletin

The Visa Bulletin is your guide to understanding when your priority date becomes current, allowing you to proceed with the next steps of your application.

Reading the Visa Bulletin

Focus on the “Employment-Based Preferences” chart to track your priority date. When your date matches or precedes the current date on the bulletin, you can move forward with your application.

Using the USCIS Online Case Status Portal

The USCIS case status check portal is a valuable tool for tracking your application’s progress. Enter your receipt number to get real-time updates and ensure you stay informed about any changes or requests for additional information.

Practical Tips for Expedited Processing

Exploring Premium Processing

Premium processing can significantly speed up the I-140 adjudication, promising a decision within 15 calendar days for an additional fee.

Avoiding Common Filing Errors

Double-check all information and documents to avoid common errors that could delay your application. Consider partnering with an experienced immigration attorney to ensure everything is in order.

Leveraging Legal Assistance

A skilled immigration lawyer can guide you through each step, ensuring your application is complete and timely, and helping you navigate any complexities or changes in immigration law.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

What are the eligibility criteria for the EB1C green card?

To be eligible, you must be a manager or executive with a multinational company and have worked in this role for at least one year within the last three years with a qualifying U.S. business relationship.

What is the step-by-step process for applying for an EB1C green card?

The process involves verifying eligibility, gathering necessary documentation, filing Form I-140, choosing between adjustment of status and consular processing, and responding to any RFEs.

How long does it take to process an EB1C green card application?

Processing times vary based on the USCIS caseload and the applicant’s country of origin. Regularly check the Visa Bulletin and consult with an immigration lawyer for the most accurate timelines.

How can I track the priority date for my EB1C green card application?

Track your priority date by regularly checking the monthly Visa Bulletin from the USCIS, which outlines the latest processing dates.

Is there a way to expedite the processing of an EB1C green card application?

Yes, premium processing is available for I-140 petitions, offering a faster adjudication timeline for an additional fee.


The EB1C green card process is a vital path for multinational managers and executives to secure their future in the United States. By understanding the eligibility criteria, navigating the application steps, and staying updated on processing times, you can streamline your journey. Utilize USCIS online tools and consider legal assistance to ensure a smooth and successful application process.

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