Chicago Employment-Based Immigration Attorney

Dedicated Legal Assistance in Cook County

Employment-based immigration can be a confusing and complex process. Our Chicago employment-based immigration lawyer at Aparicio Immigration Law can guide you and your employer through each step. We can help your prospective employer obtain the necessary labor certifications and work to place you in the best possible position. Our firm boasts a record that speaks for itself, as we have had great success securing favorable results for our clients in many types of immigration cases.

What is Employment Based Immigration?

Employers based in the United States can sponsor immigrants for green cards when hired for fairly compensated, full-time jobs that cannot be filled by domestic workers. Green cards confer lawful permanent residency and allow beneficiaries to live anywhere in the country. Obtaining a green card through your employer can also serve as a pathway to citizenship

Schedule a free initial consultation by calling us at (312) 313-6707 or contacting us online to learn more about how we can work with you and your employer to secure a green card. We work with clients in Illinois, Indiana, and Wisconsin.


  • AILA
  • Illinois State Bar
  • Chicago Bar Association
  • Lawyers for the Creative Arts

How Employment-Based Immigration Works

If you wish to work in the United States, you will need the appropriate visa and work authorization. Temporary, nonimmigrant work visas are available for a wide range of utilities and scenarios, but if you wish to live in the United States permanently, you will need to be sponsored by a U.S.-based employer.

You will only be eligible for a green card through employment if a U.S.-based employer is willing to sponsor you. Employers can only sponsor immigrants that are hired to fill full-time positions. These positions must be fairly compensated at the current industry rate (or a prevailing rate), and employers must prove that no domestic workers were available to take the job. A prospective employer will need to obtain a labor certification to prove the job you are filling meets these conditions.

Only 140,000 employment-based green cards are dispersed by United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) each year. These visas are issued across five preference categories. Our Chicago employment-based immigration attorney can help you strategize on how to best position you in the preference category system.

To obtain an employment-based green card, you will need to apply under one of the following preference categories:

  • EB-1: Priority Workers. The first preference category receives top priority and encapsulates several types of professionals, including individuals that can demonstrate “extraordinary abilities” in the athletics, arts, business, education, or science industries. “Outstanding” professors and researchers and multinational executives and managers can also qualify.
  • EB-2: Professionals with Advanced Degrees and Exceptional Workers. The second preference category covers individuals with advanced degrees, including master’s degrees, Juris Doctors, PhDs, and foreign equivalents. Professionals with bachelor’s degrees and at least five years of relevant work experience can also qualify. Individuals that can demonstrate “exceptional” abilities in their chosen field are eligible under this category. (Note that the burden of proof for “extraordinary abilities” is substantially higher than that of “exceptional abilities.”) Workers that are self-petitioning via a National Interest Waiver must additionally qualify under the terms of this category. 
  • EB-3: Professionals, Skilled Workers, and Unskilled Workers. The third preference category includes workers with bachelor’s degrees (or foreign equivalents), “skilled” workers with at least two years of job experience or training, and “unskilled” workers with less than two years of job experience or training. 
  • EB-4: Certain Special Immigrants. The fourth preference category covers miscellaneous exceptions, including some government translators and certain religious workers.
  • EB-5: Immigrant Investors. If you are willing and able to invest at least $900,000 in a USCIS-approved, U.S.-based commercial enterprise, you may qualify for a green card through the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program. Your investment must create or preserve at least 10 American jobs.

After a visa becomes available to you, you will need to either adjust your status or complete consular processing. If you are currently in the United States on another visa, you can apply to adjust your status by submitting the necessary paperwork to USCIS. If you are outside the country, you will need to go through consular processing at your home country’s U.S. embassy or consular office. This will generally involve undergoing a medical examination and an in-person interview with a USCIS official.

Benefits of Permanent Employment-Based Immigration

Once you have your green card, you will be a lawful permanent resident of the United States. This allows you to live anywhere in the country. Unlike most other temporary work visas, you will also be able to remain in the U.S. if you become unemployed. Your green card allows you to work almost any type of job. 

Your visa will be valid for ten years unless you received your green card through the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program. You can generally renew your green card in ten-year increments fairly easily. You will also be eligible to initiate the naturalization process after you have undergone a five-year waiting period and meet certain other requirements.

Our Chicago employment-based immigration lawyer is an immigrant himself. He brings firsthand knowledge of the immigrant experience to Aparicio Immigration Law and is prepared to help you obtain your employment-based green card. Our entire team is invested in your success, and we are ready to provide the tailored guidance you deserve.

We offer our legal services in English and Spanish. Contact us online today!


Why Choose Aparicio Immigration Law?

  1. 1
    We Can Relate to Your Experience
    Having gone through the immigration process himself, Attorney Aparicio has first-hand experience to help understand your situation.
  2. 2
    We Have a Record that Speaks for Itself
    With many victorious cases taken to court and hundreds of happy reviews from clients, our team proudly works hard to earn its good reputation.
  3. 3
    We are Local
    Our office is located less than a mile from Chicago Immigration Court, allowing us to very conveniently help all clients throughout Illinois, Indiana, and Wisconsin.
  4. 4
    Spanish Speaking Services Available
    With a staff that speaks English and Spanish fluently, our team makes sure all communication with clients is always direct and always clear.
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