Employment-Based Immigration and Labor Certification
Employment based immigration (with the exception of special immigrants, persons of extraordinary ability, national interest waivers, and investors) requires the employer or prospective employer to submit a petition. The employer must demonstrate that it has the financial ability to pay the wage offered and that the employee beneficiary meets the minimum requirements to perform the job satisfactorily. In certain cases (Second and Third Preference), the employer is required to obtain a Labor Certification indicating that not sufficient U.S. workers are able, willing, and qualified to perform the job and that the applicant’s employment will not adversely affect the wages and working conditions of U.S. workers. The labor Certification process is now handled through Program Electronic Review Management (PERM).
- The First Preference is for priority workers including persons of ability, outstanding professors and researchers, and multinational executives and managers
- The Second Preference is for members of the professions holding advanced degrees or person of exceptional ability.
- The Third Preference is for skilled workers, professionals and other workers.
- The Fourth Preference provides for special immigrant including religious workers, court dependents, returning residents and others.
- The Fifth Preference is an investor provision, which grants residency to persons who invest significant funds in the U.S. ($1,000,000 or under certain circumstances $500,000) and hire U.S. workers as employees.