PERM Employment Certification as the Basis for Permanent Residence_copy
Most foreign nationals seeking to obtain permanent residence through employment must have a permanent job offer from an employer who is willing to sponsor them. Before any immigrant petition can be filed, they must be the beneficiary of an approved application for alien employment certification.
The employment certification process demonstrates that there are no United States workers who are able, willing, qualified and available for the position being offered. It also ensures that employment of the foreign worker will not adversely affect the wages and working conditions of similarly-employed United States workers. The procedure for obtaining an approved employment certification is commonly referred to as PERM.
PERM may apply to several categories of workers. First, it may apply to workers in the EB-2 category with advanced degrees or exceptional ability whose work cannot qualify them for a National Interest Waiver. An advanced degree is defined as any degree higher than a Bachelor’s, or a Bachelor’s degree followed by at least 5 years progressive experience in the applicant’s field of specialization. In general, the government views “exceptional ability” under the EB-2 category as less difficult to prove than “extraordinary ability” under the EB-1 category.
PERM may also apply to the EB-3 category. This category covers many kinds of workers, including:
- Professionals with a U.S. Bachelor’s Degree or the equivalent;
- Skilled workers in positions requiring two years of training or experience; or
- Workers in positions requiring less than two years of education, training or experience.
Foreign nationals with Bachelor’s degrees will qualify as EB-3 professionals as long as their employers can demonstrate that such a degree is normally required for entry into the specified occupation. (Note: In both the EB-2 and EB-3 categories, exceptions to the labor certification requirement are available to some professionals in specific fields of employment via a “precertification” process).
The PERM process is an employment-based permanent residence option for individuals who are not eligible for any of the... More>>