I-140 Employment Authorization Document (EAD)

I-140 Employment Authorization Document (EAD), commonly referred to as I140 EAD, is used on behalf of non-U.S. citizen employees who wish to be granted an immigrant visa based on employment.


The following cases are considered under Form I-140 EAD:

  • Professors or researchers in higher education with a minimum of three years experience in an academic study or field who is recognized internationally:
    • On his or her way to achieving or has achieved tenureship in a higher education institution in his or her area of study
    • As a researcher for a higher education institution in his or her area of study
    • As a researcher for a private organization that also employees at least three other researchers and has published studies in his or her area of study
  • A non-U.S. citizen who has been employed by the company submitting this petition for at least one year in a managerial or executive role prior to submitting this form and will continue to work for said company or subsidiary.
  • A non-U.S. citizen who has worked in the fields of sciences, arts, or business and holds an advanced degree. If the non-citizen has an education up to a bachelor’s degree, he or she must have at least five years of work experience.
  • A skilled worker who has at least two years of specialized training to occupy a job where there is no equivalent U.S. citizen available to fill
  • A member of a profession with a baccalaureate degree
  • An unskilled worker to occupy a job where no equivalent U.S. citizen is available to fill

Additionally, an employer, beneficiary of this petition, or a third party may apply through this form if:

  • A non-citizen has extraordinary abilities and recognition in the fields of arts, education, sciences, business, or athletics internationally
  • A professional holding an advanced degree in the fields of arts, sciences, or business and is exempt from needing an employment offer due to his or her seeking of a National Interest Waiver

Basic Instructions

  • Forms are free to download from the USCIS website and Form I-140 can be found here
  • Filing fees for Form I-140 are $700
    • Regardless of the outcome of the application, filing fees are non-refundable
    • Do not mail cash
    • Make a check or money order payable to U.S. Department of Homeland Security in U.S. currency
    • If you live outside of the U.S, please contact the nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate on steps for payment
    • If a check is returned unpayable, the USCIS will attempt one additional time to process a copy. If it is returned again, you will be rejected on form I-140 and be charged a return check fee
  • Photocopies of documentation are to be submitted unless original documentation is requested. If you submit original documentation when not asked to, you may not be able to retrieve them.

Gathering Materials

Initial Evidence

  • If you are filing for “An alien of extraordinary ability” (Part 2. Item 1.a.), you must attach the following
    • Evidence of an awarded achievement; or
    • At least three of the following:
      • Evidence of a lesser nationally or internationally recognized ward in the field of specialization
      • Membership in an association which would require achievements in the field of specialization
      • Publication in a major media outlet which features the alien in question with respect to their field
      • Experience as a judge of work in their field
      • Original contributions of importance to their field
      • Scholarly contribution to a publication on their field from a major media outlet
      • Evidence of contribution to an exhibition or showcase of the alien’s work
      • Experience in a leading or critical role in an organization with distinguished reputation
      • Evidence of a high salary or remuneration for his or her services
      • Evidence of success in the performing arts through box office, video, or music sales
    • Comparable evidence to the above qualifications may be submitted as substitution if the previously state do not apply; and
    • Evidence in the form of employer referrals, contracts, or personal statements indicating the alien intends to continue working in their field of study in the United States
  • A U.S. employer filing on behalf of an outstanding researcher or professor (Part 2. Item 1.b.) must file form I-140 with the following:
    • Evidence of international recognition of excellence in his or her field in the form of at least two of the following items:
      • Awards or prizes for outstanding achievement in an academic field

Important Notes

  • Use black ink
  • Do not forget to physically sign the form. Typewritten signatures will not be accepted.

What is the Latest Form I-140 Edition?

The latest edition of the Form I-140 is Edition 05/27/20. This form is used to petition for an alien worker to become a permanent resident in the United States.

What are the Required Documents for Form I-140?

1. Evidence of the alien’s ability to pay the fees associated with Form I-140 filing, if applicable;
2. Evidence of the alien’s work experience;
3. Evidence of the alien’s educational qualifications;
4. Evidence of the alien’s qualifications for the job, such as licenses and certifications;
5. A copy of the labor certification or waiver, if applicable;
6. A copy of the employment contract or offer letter;
7. Documentation that proves the alien’s current lawful nonimmigrant status;
8. A copy of any relevant court orders or decisions; and
9. Any other documents requested by USCIS in support of the petition.

How to Submit Form I-140?

Submitting an I-140 form is a crucial step in the process of obtaining a green card. It is important to follow the instructions carefully and provide all the necessary documents to make sure your application is complete.

1. Get started. The first step is to collect your documents that prove your eligibility for an immigrant visa. This includes evidence of employer sponsorship, qualifying educational credentials, proof of work experience, and other evidence that you meet the criteria for your visa type.

2. Collect the supporting documents. Depending on the type of visa you are applying for, you may need to provide other documents such as marriage or birth certificates, financial records, and medical information. Check the form instructions and make sure you have all required documents before submitting your application.

3. Download Form I-140 from the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) website. Read all the instructions carefully and fill out the form completely and accurately.

4. Submit your application and fees. Once you have completed Form I-140, you will need to submit it along with any supporting documents and fees to USCIS. You can also submit your application online using the online filing system.

5. Wait for approval. After submitting your application, you should receive an approval letter or receipt number from USCIS in the mail. This is an indication that your application has been accepted and is being processed by USCIS.

What are the Filing Tips for Form I-140?

1. Gather the necessary documents before filing. It is important to have all the documents needed to file your I-140 form before you begin the process. This includes copies of any required academic degrees or transcripts, a letter from your employer, and any other documents depending on the type of petition you are filing.

2. Carefully read the instructions for form I-140. Each case is different and your situation may require you to provide additional information or documents. Knowing what is required beforehand can save you time and stress.

3. Have your employer sign the I-140 form if they are filing on your behalf. Employers must sign Form I-140 if they are filing the application on behalf of an employee.

4. Make sure all attached documents are translated into English if necessary. All documents that are not in English must be translated into English and include a certification by the translator that states they are competent to translate in the language being translated.

5. Submit the form along with the filing fee and all required supporting documents. The filing fee for Form I-140 varies depending on the type of application being filed but generally ranges from $325 – $700. The form must be sent by mail or submitted online through a USCIS-approved platform such as USCIS ELIS or e-filing.

Are There Special Instructions for Form I-140?

Yes, there are special instructions for Form I-140. These instructions include things such as which documents you will need to provide, how you should fill out certain sections of the form, and how to submit the form. Additionally, there are often specific instructions based on the type of visa you are applying for. It is important to read these instructions carefully and make sure that you understand them before submitting your application.

What is the Form I-140 Fee?

The Form I-140 Fee is a filing fee charged by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) for an immigrant petition for an Alien Worker. The fee is currently $700 and can be paid with a check or money order made out to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

Can I Apply for Form I-140 Fee Waiver or Reduction?

No, you cannot apply for a form I-140 fee waiver or reduction. This type of waiver or reduction is only available to individuals who are eligible for certain public benefits, such as those provided by the government. Additionally, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) does not have a fee waiver or reduction process for filing fees associated with Form I-140.

What is the Form I-140 Processing Time?

The processing time for Form I-140 can vary depending on the USCIS office where it is filed and the type of filing. Generally, the processing time can range from two months to six months or more. You can check the current processing times on the USCIS website.

Form I-140 Frequently Asked Questions

1. What is Form I-140?

Form I-140 is a petition for alien worker that is submitted to the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) by an employer to sponsor a foreign worker for lawful permanent residence (a green card).

2. Who needs to file Form I-140?

Employers must file Form I-140 if they wish to sponsor a foreign worker for lawful permanent residence. The employer must demonstrate that the foreign worker has the qualifications necessary for their job and that there are no qualified U.S. workers available for the position.

3. What are the eligibility requirements for filing Form I-140?

In order to be eligible to file Form I-140, an employer must establish the foreign worker’s eligibility by proving that:
• The job offered requires a minimum of two years of training or experience
• The job is in a specialty occupation that requires theoretical and practical application of a body of specialized knowledge
• The foreign worker has the necessary qualifications to perform the job
• The employer has the ability to pay the offered wage
• No qualified U.S. workers are available for the position

4. How long does it take to get approval for Form I-140?

It typically takes between 6 and 12 months for USCIS to process and approve an I-140 petition. However, this can vary depending on how long it takes for USCIS to review all of your documents and evidence. Your application may take longer if you do not submit all of the required documentation or if USCIS needs additional information from you in order to make a decision on your application.

5. What are my options if my Form I-140 is denied?

If your Form I-140 application is denied, you may request an appeal of the decision or re-file your Form I-140 with USCIS. In either case, you must provide additional evidence or documentation to support your application. An attorney can help you understand your options and prepare your case in order to increase your chances of approval.