If an individual qualifies for the second employment-based category (EB-2), he or she must usually go through the labor certification process. There is, however, an exception to this requirement if the employment in question is of “national interest,” in which case you may qualify for something called a “national interest waiver.”
The requirements for obtaining a national interest waiver are very strict. Basically, the individual trying to get the waiver must demonstrate that undergoing the PERM or labor certification process would not work for national interest, which understandably be quite challenging to prove. Nonetheless, when an individual is extremely distinguished in his or her particular field, the labor certification process may not be of national interest if his or her petition is not approved simply because a United States worker meets the minimum requirements for the job in question.
Down history, certain revisions have been made to the law regarding national interest waivers which have made obtaining the waivers easier for physicians seeking to practice in certain fields and have eliminated many of the restrictions that were part of the INS regulations for obtaining the waivers.