Ministers and non-ministers in religious vocations and occupations may immigrate to or adjust status in the U.S. for the purpose of performing religious work in a full-time compensated position.
The special immigrant religious worker category is one of several employment-based fourth-preference (EB-4) visa classifications. See additional information about other EB-4 classifications.
Non-Minister Religious Worker CapThere is a statutory numerical limit (or “cap”) of 5,000 workers who may be issued a special immigrant non-minister religious worker visa during each fiscal year. There is no cap for special immigrant religious workers entering the U.S. solely for the purpose of carrying on the vocation of a minister.
Sunset Date for Non-Minister Religious Workers
Dec. 10, 2016, President Obama signed Public Law 114-254 extending the EB-4 non-minister special immigrant religious worker program. The new date on which this program will end is April 28, 2017. The law allows these workers to immigrate or adjust to permanent resident by that date. Non-minister special immigrant religious workers include those within a religious vocation or occupation engaged in either a professional or non-professional capacity.
This date on which the program will end applies to accompanying spouses and children of these non-minister special immigrant religious workers. Special Immigrants entering the U.S. solely for the purpose of carrying on the vocation of a minister, and their accompanying spouses and children, are not affected by this date.
To qualify as a special immigrant religious worker, the foreign national must:
Note: Full time work is an average of 35 hours per week. Compensated may mean salaried or unsalaried.
We will be happy to clarify all intricacies of these cases. Please contact us for more information.