The great majority of attempts to obtain permanent residence (green card) based on an offer of employment start with an application for Labor Certification through an administrative process now called PERM.  The purpose of PERM, which is processed with the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) and not with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (CIS), is to obtain a certification from DOL that if a foreign national is allowed to come to the United States permanently to fill an offered position the foreign national is (1) not taking that position away for a U.S. worker who wants the position and (2) also satisfies all of the minimum requirements for the position.  Based on over twenty-six years of experience with the Labor Certification process, no area of Immigration Law causes more concern for employers.  The process causes concern because the legal requirements for testing the United States labor market are completely different from the steps an employer would normally take to find an employee.  For this reason employers often assume, incorrectly, that there is no chance that a particular position could possibly be certified, while others, who try to go through Labor Certification without legal representation, are doomed to failure because they are unfamiliar with what the law actually requires.  At Perez & Associates we have been helping employers obtain Labor Certifications for over twenty-six years.  An employer should never pass up a foreign worker because they fear the Labor Certification process.  Contact Perez & Associates, let us evaluate your case, and give you an idea of your chances of succeeding with a Labor Certification.



Payment of Prevailing Wage

The law states that a foreign worker must be paid at least the prevailing wage for the position offered.  The prevailing wage for a specific position in a particular geographic area is determined by DOL.  Employers who are trying to obtain Labor Certification for an existing employee often conclude, incorrectly, that if the prevailing wage is higher than the wage they have been paying that foreign worker they must immediately increase that employee’s wages.  That’s not the case.  The reason is that the Labor Certification process, as well as the other legal steps that follow, are just that, steps towards an intention to employ a foreign worker permanently in the future when that foreign worker obtains their permanent residence (green card).  Only then, when the foreign worker is finally granted permanent residence (a green card), will the employer be required to start  paying the prevailing wage.  Perez & Associates will work with employers to help identify the proper job title and will obtain the prevailing wage from DOL.



Before anything is filed with DOL the employer is required to undertake certain specified recruitment efforts.  For all positions these include such things as newspaper advertising, posting of the job opportunity on business premises, and the listing of the position with the State Workforce Agency.  For professional positions employers must take all of the steps just mentioned plus three additional steps from a list of ten.  Perez & Associates will provide employers with the text for the newspaper ads and internal posting.  We will also take care of listing the position with the State Workforce Agency.  Finally, when required, we will work with employers to help identify the three additional recruitment efforts best suited to the employer.  Finally, we will instruct the employer on the proper way to interview any prospective applicants so that improper interviewing does not violate the requirements of the Labor Certification process.  Remember, the Labor Certification process is nothing like a normal hiring process.


Filing of the Application

Under PERM, applications are filed on line.  The online PERM application is a very complicated, ten page application.  Complicated because many of the questions are ambiguous. This makes it easy to enter a wrong answer.  The problem is that you may not know until years later that the wrong answer has voided the entire process.  The attorneys at Perez & Associates have participated in seminars and frank discussions with DOL to determine the correct way to answer the questions. With Perez & Associates assisting you the application will be done right the first time.  Perez & Associates will also file the application for the employer and respond to any questions from DOL.



Once filed, Labor Certification (PERM) applications are typically approved in about 90 days.



1303 N.  Armenia Ave., Tampa, FL 33607

813.254.VISA (8472)

FAX  813.254.3712


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1303 N.  Armenia Ave., Tampa, FL 33607

813.254.VISA (8472)

FAX  813.254.3712


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