Case: NIW I-140 and I-485 Approved After 2 Months

Dr. Lee came to the U.S to continue his studies after obtaining his M.S and B.S degrees in Biochemistry in South Korea. He completed his Ph. D degree in Craniofacial Biology at a university in the U.S. When he first contacted our office in February 2008, he was working as a postdoctoral fellow in a medical center.

After reviewing Dr. Lee’s educational background and research achievements, Attorney Jerry Zhang confirmed that Dr. Lee was eligible for a NIW petition. Although he had the major criteria necessary to apply for a National Interest Waiver, Dr. Lee’s case was not very strong because he was not a member of any scientific organization and he had no paper review experience. However, Dr. Lee was eligible to concurrently file an I-485 application, as he was born in South Korea and immigration visa numbers currently are available for NIW petitioners (Second Preference Category) born in South Korea. Attorney Zhang recognized that only a very experienced firm that specializes in NIW petitions could turn this average case into an exceptional one.

Preparation for Dr. Lee’s NIW and I-485 cases began as soon as the contract was signed on February 25, 2008. One of our experienced attorneys, was assigned as the in-charge attorney. Dr. Lee’s NIW petition had an average chance of approval as he only had 10 peer reviewed journals, had no memberships of organizations in his field, and had no experience as a judge of others’ work. In order to demonstrate Dr. Lee’s qualifications, our attorney emphasized not only the quality of his papers, but also the broad applications of his research. As the USCIS has recently issued RFEs requesting further evidence to demonstrate the application of NIW Petitioners’ research as proof of the impact of their work, our attorney addressed every implementation of Dr. Lee’s research by other researchers. In the petition letter, our attorney especially highlighted the fact that Dr. Lee’s works were widely applied, published in high quality journals, and resulted in 150 citations.  

To demonstrate that Dr. Lee is qualified for a National Interest Waiver, our attorney emphasized in the petition letter that: Dr. Lee sought employment in the field of immunology research, particularly in the field of thymic regeneration. This field is one of substantial intrinsic merit for its role in generating scientific advances in the development of new pharmaceutical products and therapies. Dr. Lee’s work endeavors to improve immune responses to irradiation, chemotherapy and aging. His work also helps to address multiple healthcare issues in the U.S. Advances in immunology science are of paramount importance and research in this area is most definitely in the National Interest.  Such research is clearly of substantial intrinsic merit. Dr. Lee’s research is aimed at designing novel pharmaceutical products to improve immune responses in the elderly. His work plays an integral role in public health issues. Thus, Dr. Lee’s work is directly related to the healthcare goals of the US.  Our attorney also addressed the numerous and widespread benefits of Dr. Lee’s research results on the U.S.’s healthcare, economy, and our society at large.

We started to prepare Dr. Lee’s cases in late February 2008, and all the materials for his NIW and I-485 were ready by September 2008. During the preparatory period, our attorneys and assistants kept in touch with Dr. Lee through mailings, emails, phone calls and all other methods in order to file his petition with USCIS completely and efficiently. The petitions were filed on September 10, 2008.

On November 20, 2008, only 2 months after the cases were filed, both Dr. Lee’s NIW and I-485 petitions were approved. Seven days later, Dr. Lee received his Green Card. Thanks to the strong petition letter and extensive preparation, the petitions were approved quickly without any twists and turns. Dr. Lee was quite excited to hear this good news. Our attorneys and supporting professionals were also very happy with this result. We attribute the success of Dr. Lee’s application to the specially tailored preparation in regard of Dr. Lee’s background, which successfully turned an average petition to a comparative strong case.

Dr. Lee received his green card only two months after filing. We must admit that he is very lucky. Most cases do not get approved within such a short time; it usually takes USCIS about one year to process I-140 petitions and one to two years to process I-485 applications. In addition, a specially tailored preparation in regard of applicant’s background is also important to the success of NIW petition. Recently several of our firm’s cases have been approved in a relatively short period of time—about 2 months on average. We believe that the responsible, hard work of our experienced attorneys is extremely helpful for an immigration petition, and will eventually lead to a happy result.

*In order to protect our client’s privacy, all identifying information has been changed.

An attorney’s expertise and experience play a critical role in an NIW green card application. Our attorneys have extensive experience in NIW applications. In the past 12 years, we have successfully handled thousands of NIW applications with an extremely high overall approval rate.

If you plan to file an NIW application, please send your CV to Attorney Jerry Zhang ( for a free evaluation.

Founded in 1996, Zhang & Associates, P.C. offers legal services to clients nationwide in all aspects of U.S immigration law. We have successfully handled thousands of immigration cases.

At Zhang & Associates, P.C., our attorneys and supporting professionals are committed to providing high-quality immigration and non-immigration visa services. We specialize in NIW, EB-1, PERM, and I-485 cases. In the past twelve years, we have successfully helped thousands of clients get green cards. If you plan to apply for a green card, please send your CV to Attorney Jerry Zhang ( for a free evaluation.

Zhang & Associates, PC.

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