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What is PERM Labor Certification?

A labor certification is a certification made by the United States Department of Labor that a shortage of qualified U.S. workers exists to fill the position held by the sponsored alien employee, and that the company will pay the employee the prevailing wage. The labor certification is valid only as long as terms remain unchanged; that is, the alien continues to work for the same employer. Based on the information we obtain from you, our office will draft the documentation necessary for this process.

Included in this process our office will work with the sponsoring employer to draft an advertisement of the proffered position and review the employee’s credentials to make sure that employee is qualified for the position.

What is involved in the Recruitment Process?

The sponsoring company will need to undertake several forms of recruitment during the six months prior to filing an application for labor certification. For a professional position, there are four mandatory requirements.

The company’s recruitment efforts must include:

  • Two Sunday advertisements placed in a major local newspaper;
  • Posting notice of the job opportunity on the company premises for 10 consecutive business days ;
  • Placing a job order with the State Workforce Commission for 30 days; and
  • Obtaining a prevailing wage determination from the National Prevailing Wage Center.

In addition, the sponsoring company must undertake at least three of the following:

    • Participating in a job fair;
    • Posting the position on the employer’s website;
    • Use of a job search website other than the employer’s;
    • On-campus recruiting;
    • Recruitment through trade or professional organizations;
    • Use of private employment firms;
    • Use of an employee referral program with incentives;
    • Posting notice of the job opening at a campus placement office if the job requires a degree but no experience;
    • Advertisement in local and ethnic newspapers; or
    • Radio and television

The sponsoring employer should be able to demonstrate that qualified U.S. applicants are in short supply. The employer must demonstrate shortage on a case-by-case basis. Based upon the recruitment efforts of the sponsoring company, our office will draft a letter, called a Recruitment Report, generally in collaboration with the employer’s Human Resources department and will specify:

    • The number of job openings;
    • The number of résumés received;
    • The number of openings remaining;
    • Brief grounds for rejection of unqualified workers; and
    • That old résumés will be kept until the case is concluded.

How long does the PERM Labor Certification process take?

Once all of the recruitment steps are accomplished, we will then electronically file the labor certification application. The expected processing time for electronically filed applications under PERM can vary. The application may be subject to an audit, which can increase the expected processing time.

Is the sponsoring employer and/or employee bound once a labor certification is filed?

Please note that applying for a labor certification does not bind the employer legally. The employer remains free to dismiss the employee or to take other personnel action as it would with regard to any other employee. Also, the employer may withdraw the labor certification application at any time.

On the other hand, the application does not bind the employee to the employer either. However, it is important, before expending great amounts of time and effort that the employee is sure that there is relative job stability and that the employee will be remaining with the employer at least until the whole process has been completed.