Employment Based Immigration
The process for obtaining permanent residence based on employment is composed of three phases: the labor certification, the visa petition, and the application for permanent residence. Each step can be tedious and very detailed oriented, but we work hard to make the process as painless and easy as possible.
LABOR CERTIFICATION - "PERM"
The first step is getting a labor certification from the Department of Labor (DOL). Basically the business has to prove that there are not workers available in the United States that are ready, willing, available, and competent to do the job that the business wishes to offer to the foreign national. This involves first identifying and evaluating the job requirements and job duties. Since DOL will ultimately be making a decision as to whether there is a shortage of U.S. workers, we need to decide whether we have a credible case to pursue. Assuming that a decision is made to move forward, we will request a prevailing wage determination based on the duties and requirements. Once the prevailing wage has been obtained, the next step is to recruit.
Recruiting requires posting advertisements for the job being offered. The amount of advertising and what must be advertised depends on the type of job and what preference category the job falls into.
We will work with you to develop the proper language for the advertisements and assist you. We will also work with you when the time comes to review resumes which come to you in response to the recruitment efforts. Finally, we will draft all documents and letters that will be signed by your company personnel and we will file them with the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL). A carefully and properly filed PERM is usually granted after review by DOL, although there may be an interim step called an “audit” where DOL might request more documentation or information or might require additional supervised recruitment.
Our firm is proactive and will identify problems upfront. Common problems or issues include those related to the prevailing wage, experience gained on the job, education level required, and special requirements. We will work with you to resolve any problems early in the process.
Once the Labor Certification is approved, the next step is to file a visa petition.
THE VISA PETITION
Upon receiving an approved labor certification, the next step is to file the visa petition, which will be signed by the employer and submitted to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) along with the approved labor certification. At this time, the employer must submit documentation establishing the company’s ability to pay the employee’s proffered wages.
Once the Visa Petition is approved, the next step is to file for permanent residency.
APPLYING FOR PERMANENT RESIDENCE
The final phase is applying for an Immigrant Visa or to Adjust the Status of the employee. There will be much documentation that needs to be submitted to either the U.S. Consulate abroad, or to USCIS. We will work very closely with the employee to ensure everything is properly filed, which will maximize the chances of approval. The employee will be granted permanent residence, and, shortly thereafter, be issued a “green card” as evidence of permanent residence.
If you are an American business wanting to petition to bring a foreign employee to your company contact us and let us help you.