Information for the Petition

  • Copy of passport, including biographic page, front and back cover, all stamped pages, and I-94 card.
  • Completed copy of detailed immigration history, including any student, employment, or temporary visa documents.
  • Copy of your birth certificate. Your birth certificate must include your name, date, and place of birth, and your parents’ names.
  • Copy of your marriage certificate, if applicable.
  • Copies of birth certificates for all of your children, even if they are outside the US or not applying with you.
  • Copy of your original employment offer letter, if your petition is being sponsored by your employer.

Information About Your Work

  • A short, non-technical description of your work. Please use plain language as much as possible, as though you were explaining your work to someone who is not your field. This research description will not be submitted with your application. It is for internal purposes only.
  • Copies of the first pages of your published articles
  • Evidence of your work being used/followed by others outside of your institution, such as undergoing clinical trials, leading to patent applications, included in the syllabus of a course, seen interest by a private company,  been used as a basis for a grant application, etc.  THIS IS VERY USEFUL, and will set your case apart from the many others being filed.
  • Copies of any peer reviews of your articles or grant applications that are clearly positive, i.e., have good quotes.  This is also very useful, please ask for copies of these reviews – they are the ultimate independent reference.
  • Copies of 5-10 articles (especially review articles) that cite or mention your work significantly
  • Information about peer-reviewing you have done for journals, conferences, or grants
  • Copy of your highest diploma
  • Evidence of any media coverage of your work (in major media or scientific publications)
  • Documentation of awards or fellowships you have received, but only if they are extremely hard to get. Please give details on how selective they are.
  • Copies of abstracts or programs from conference proceedings where you have chaired or presented
  • A list of references, with contact information. Please note that USCIS does not give as much deference to reference letters, which they consider subjective, and, thus, letters should only supplement and describe the other objective evidence in the file. The number of references we recommend working with varies depending on the case type and specific characteristics of the case. We find that EB1A and O1 petitions generally benefit from 3-4 reference letters, NIW petitions from 2-3 letters, and EB1B petitions from 1-2 letters. For streamlined petitions we do not recommend including reference letters. References should be from a variety of universities, agencies or nonprofits, with about half of these being independent (i.e. people who you have never worked or collaborated with). If any of your references have written letters for you the past year, please send us electronic copies.
  • Any other documentation you think might help show the reaction of the research community to your work – this is a key question, and we can work with you to brainstorm ideas for how to demonstrate the reaction of the research community.

What Else Can I Do to Help My Case?

If you want to be more involved, you can help us creative ways to document the impact your work has had on your field. You may have access to powerful research tools that we do not. See this list for more information.

Please Note:

We prefer to talk to or email your references to get more details and their perspective on your work. With even a short phone conversation, we can draft a letter for them. If you have a reference who will not have time to talk to us, please give us the name of someone else (graduate student, post-doc, etc.,) who will have time to talk to us and give details for the reference letter.

A Few Notes About our Checklists:

  • These checklists do not address the question or whether or not it is advisable to file a petition in any category. They are intended for current clients of Curran, Berger & Kludt who have been referred to this list by staff.
  • If you have sent us an item from a checklist already, you do not need to send it again. Just let us know that you have already sent it.
  • Do not send us original documents. You should make copies of all of your items and keep your originals in a safe place.
  • Curran, Berger & Kludt clients will receive login information to our secure upload site. There, you can submit scanned copies of your documents.
  • Feel free to send us your documents as they become available. There is no need to wait until you have everything. We usually can get started with just a few items. If you have any questions, or think that obtaining a necessary document will be difficult, don’t hesitate to contact us so we can discuss a plan to move forward.