Labor Certification

The primary purpose of a labor certification is to obtain the necessary determination required under the U.S. immigration laws in support of an immigrant visa (“green card”) petition, that there are not sufficient U.S. workers who are able, willing and qualified for the position to be held by the foreign employee and that the employment of the foreign employee will not adversely affect the wages and working conditions of U.S. workers. In order to obtain this determination, an application describing the position’s duties, minimum requirements for the position and the results of recruiting for the position must be approved by the U.S. Department of Labor.

Once the labor certification application has been approved, a visa petition is filed with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service. In connection with the petition, the employer must demonstrate that it had the ability to pay the wage listed on the labor certification application from the time the labor certification application was filed up to and including the time that the petition is approved. The final step in the permanent residence process involves the employee demonstrating they are not subject to any ineligibility for permanent residence.

Frequently Asked Questions about Labor Certification

What Kind Of Work Qualifies For A Permanent Labor Certification?

Under the permanent labor certification process, the job must be:

  • Full time and permanent
  • One where an employer employee relationship exists, evidenced by the employer’s ability to hire, supervise and provide payment to the employee
  • One in which generally, the job duties are be consistent with those defined in the ONET and normally required for the job in the U.S.
  • One where the hiring requirements conform to the Department of Labor’s data for usual experience and education standards common to the occupation and the industry
  • One that is not tailored to the qualifications of the foreign worker
  • One that does not include requirements for a language other than English, without written justification


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