A foreign worker may be eligible for CW status if he or she is:
- Ineligible for a nonimmigrant or immigrant classification under the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA);
- Entering or staying in the CNMI to work as a needed foreign national worker to supplement the resident workforce;
- The beneficiary of a petition filed by a legitimate employer who is doing business in the CNMI;
- Not present in the United States, other than the CNMI;
- Lawfully present in the CNMI or, if not present, intending to enter the CNMI with a visa; and
- Admissible to the United States or is granted any necessary waiver of a ground of inadmissibility.
- Is conducting a legitimate business, as defined in the final rule;
- Has considered all available U.S. workers for the position;
- Offers terms and conditions of employment consistent with the nature of the employer’s business in the CNMI;
- Is complying with federal and CNMI employment requirements;
- Files a Form I-129CW, Petition for CNMI-Only Nonimmigrant Transitional Worker, and a CW-1 Classification Supplement with USCIS; and
- Submits the appropriate filing fees.
- A $325 fee for the Form I-129CW;
- A mandatory CNMI education funding fee of $150 per beneficiary per year; and
- A biometric fee of $85 if the worker is located in the CNMI.
The CW visa classification is valid only in the CNMI and provides no basis for travel or work in any other part of the United States, except for nationals of the Philippines who may travel between the Philippines and the CNMI through the Guam airport. The final rule also provides for the grant of derivative CW status to spouses and minor children of CW workers.
USCIS is the agency within the Department of Homeland Security responsible for immigration benefits. For more information and announcements on immigration benefits specific to the CNMI, please visit the agency’s CNMI Web page at www.uscis.gov/cnmi. For more information on USCIS and its programs, please visit www.uscis.gov or follow us on Twitter (@uscis), YouTube (/uscis) and the USCIS blog The Beacon.