Labor Certification and the PERM Process
Under U.S. immigration law, permanent labor certification by the United States Department of Labor is required for certain employer-sponsored permanent residency applications. A common example of this is an application for a Green Card. In its application for this certification, an employer must prove that there are no available, willing, and able U.S. workers that it can hire for the position, and that employing the non-citizen applicant will not have an adverse effect on the wages and working conditions of other U.S. workers who are in similar positions.
The Department of Labor issues labor certifications for foreign nationals based on strict criteria. Congress has established these criteria in an effort to protect the rights of foreign workers, protect the rights of similarly qualified U.S. workers, and to create opportunities for employers to hire qualified foreign labor if they can’t find a U.S. citizen to perform the desired job functions.
Employers who file for labor certification must complete the Program Electronic Review Management process, or PERM as it is more commonly known. PERM uses an electronic platform through which the government receives and processes labor certification applications. Employers use the system to attest to the veracity of their application and the government checks and confirms their statements.
If the Department of Labor certifies the labor certification application, the employer and foreign national can continue the permanent residency process by submitting the appropriate documentation to the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services agency.
If you have concerns about your eligibility for Labor Certification or want guidance with completing this process, please contact us for more information or to schedule an appointment with Attorney Mona Tehrani.