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Is Just Barely Meeting O-1 Visa Requirements Enough?

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My boyfriend has received a job offer that requires an O-1 visa and I’m curious if he meets the qualifications to be approved.


He works in a very specialized scientific field, only a few thousand people worldwide do his type of research. There are less than 5 locations in the US where this research is done (he currently works at one location, the new job is at a different one). 


Since he received his PhD in 2016 at a non-US university (at a different country that he did his Masters at), he has worked in the United States as a postdoctoral researcher under a different type of visa.


For his accomplishments, he has been published (including as a lead author), presented at conferences and has been a peer reviewer for a journal (one time). He will have 6-8 letters of recommendations. I do not know of any awards/high recognition he has received, and I don’t think he has membership in exclusive organizations.


He is working with an attorney (provided by the new job) for his application. I don’t think his company or attorney have much experience with O-1 visas.


It seems like he just barely meets the qualifications for this visa, but they are rather vague. To get approved, does he need to go above and beyond the requirements or is just meeting them enough?

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Certainly for a marginal case the competency of the Lawyer can be crucial.



“If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.”

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