Program Electronic Review Management (PERM)
The PERM labor certification is the first step for the employment based Green Card process. After the applicant gets the PERM labor certification from the Department of Labor (DOL), the employer can then initiate the Green Card process by filing the employment-based immigration petition on behalf of foreign employee. An application for labor certification is submitted to the DOL by using ETA Form 9089. In the Labor Certification process, the employer will have to prove to the DOL that they were unable to find a suitable candidate for the job position in the domestic market, and that employment of the foreign worker will not adversely affect the wages and working conditions of similarly employed U.S. workers. For example, the petitioning employer has to go through a series of recruitment process where they advertise for the position, carry out interviews and complete other formalities related to recruiting. As a result, the petitioners wish to sponsor the foreign worker for permanent residency since the foreign employee has the required qualifications and expertise. They will also have to show the DOL that in employing the foreign worker, they are not depriving any domestic worker (American) of a job. There are a number of other restrictions on the employer.
Under PERM regulations, employers have the option of submitting the labor certification application, electronically or by mail, directly to the DOL for adjudication. No supporting documents are submitted at the time of filing. However, the petitioning employer must conduct all required recruitment activities, and have all supporting documents ready prior to filing. Recruitment Document (such as website printouts, newspaper tear sheets, job orders, etc.) should be saved by a petitioner for 5 years to ensure compliance with a potential audit or review. According to the DOL, an electronically filed PERM labor certification application was originally expected to be adjudicated in around 45-60 days unless the case was audited. The current processing time for unaudited PERM applications is closer to 90 days. If the case is selected by the DOL for auditing, the petitioning employer should submit all requested documents to the DOL within 30 days. If the employer does not respond to the audit request, the case is deemed abandoned and the employer may be required to conduct "Supervised Recruitment" for any future labor certification.
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