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What is the Labor Certification or PERM Process in Employment Immigration?


The majority of employment-based immigration categories require you to have a job offer from a United States employer. This employer is the sponsor (petitioner) and you are the beneficiary.

For these visa categories, the employer must first get an approved labor certification from the Department of Labor. After they receive this, the employer can then move forward with applying for your employment-based visa through USCIS (United States Citizenship and Immigration Services).

Obtaining a labor certification consists of two major components, applying for a Prevailing Wage Determination (PWD) and submitting a PERM application after completing recruitment. The PERM application is an electronic system used to process the labor certifications.

The Department of Labor will issue a labor certification if it can verify two things: (1) There are not enough qualified and willing United States workers available to fill the position at the prevailing wage. This process is done through an extensive recruiting process and then verified by the PERM application. (2) Hiring a foreign worker will not adversely affect the wages and working conditions of similarly situated employed workers in the United States.

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Immigration law can be complicated and this article does not cover all the issues regarding the labor certification process. These cases can be extremely complex, and a single misstep could potentially lead to a deportation or other immigration penalties. If you have any questions regarding your immigration case, please do not hesitate to contact our office.

Call our law firm to consult with an immigration attorney today at: (949) 285-1836.

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