What is Program Electronic Review Management Or PERM?

A PERM (Program Electronic Review Management) application for Labor Certification is often the first of three steps that an employer must take in order to sponsor a foreign employee for permanent resident status. It is the first step in an employment-based visa for some foreigners who want to get a Green Card based on their job. It is significantly called PERM Labor Certification. 

As part of the system, the “green card processing” is a three-step process:

Firstly, a U.S. employer who wants to hire a foreign worker full-time and permanently files a PERM application with the U.S. Department of Labor Employment and Training Administration (DOL-ETA) for certification.

Once certified, the U.S. employer files an I-140 Immigrant Petition for Alien Worker with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), an agency of the U.S. Department of Homeland Security.

When the I-140 petition is approved and the foreign worker has a visa number, they file an I-485 Application to Register Permanent Residence or Change Status.

Obtaining the status of “lawful permanent resident,” or “having a green card,” in the United States is conditional on completing each of these three steps.

It is a tough call to make the decision of moving from your home country to a new country, and in such a scenario understanding the nitty-gritty of the PERM process can be a daunting task.

It is no secret that getting a work permit in the USA is one of the most time-consuming ordeals and it is a task best handled by immigration professionals with extensive experience in the field.

In this article, Legal Herman Group has attempted to use their 25 years of experience and break down the meaning and process of PERM regulations in the simplest language for you to start your application TODAY!

Note: It is only the employer who can file the PERM application.

The PERM Application Process For Labor Certification

What are the first steps in getting a PERM work permit? 

In order to meet the requirements of the PERM application, a U.S. employer has to successfully prove that there are no U.S. workers who are able and willing to execute the work offered to a foreign worker and that the hiring of a foreign worker will not negatively influence the earnings and working conditions of similarly employed U.S. workers.

This second stipulation has been construed as requiring the post to be provided at the “prevailing wage” as assessed by the Department of Labor.

Before the PERM application can be filed, the employer must actively look for U.S. workers for at least 30 days for the job being offered to the foreign worker and attest to paying the foreign worker at or above the prevailing wage. This shows that there is a shortage of U.S. workers for the job.

Two advertising in the local Sunday newspaper, a 30-day posting on the state’s Job Order, and postings in three more places, such as an employer’s website or an Internet job posting site and university placement offices, are all essential steps in the recruitment process for a typical professional position (such as engineer, accountant, or software application developer).

There are ten different types of recruiting media available, and the company must pick three to use. Additionally, a PERM application must be posted for 10 consecutive business days at the location of work to notify the employer’s negotiating representatives or employees.

While conducting a search for a foreign worker, the U.S. company must actively seek out any U.S. workers who may be able to fill that post. As a result, any applicants from the United States who have been turned away during the hiring process must be turned away for legitimate employment reasons.

When the PERM Application is Submitted, What Happens? 

An analyst from the Department of Labor will look over the PERM application, and one of these three things will happen during the process of labor certification:  

  1. The request will be granted. 
  2. There will be an audit of the application. A small number of applications are picked at random to be audited, while a larger number are picked because of something in the application that raised a red flag. 
  3. Rarely, an application will be turned down without being checked out. This should only happen when the requirements for hiring have not been met. 

Next, you may want to know what a PERM audit is- 

An audit is when the Department of Labor wants to know more about something on the PERM application or wants to see more proof. Some of the reasons people ask for audits are: 

  1. Proof that all required steps in the hiring process have been taken, including proof of all applications received and proper contact with potentially qualified applicants. 
  2. Explain why the minimum degree is needed for the job. 
  3. Explain why the job requires a certain number of months or years of related work experience or academic knowledge.
  4. Explain why the job requires a certain set of specialized skills, knowledge, or training. Explain why the job requires knowledge of a foreign language. 
  5. Explain why the job requires domestic or international travel. 

Because audits can happen at any time and the DOL is looking into more and more cases, Herman Legal Group takes all the necessary steps to help avoid audits and be ready for them if we get one. 

Recruitment Reports 

The most common type of audit case for foreign nationals is a request for a recruitment report including all recruitment paperwork and applications, along with an explanation of why each applicant wasn’t chosen.

So, it’s important for the sponsoring employer to show that he or she is making a good faith effort when reviewing resumes and contacting applicants who might be qualified. The employer should also keep detailed records of all communication with applicants. 

After an audit of the perm petition, the DOL may sometimes order supervised recruitment.

What Does Supervisor Recruitment Mean In PERM Audit? 

In some cases, after an employer has sent the DOL paperwork about recruitment in response to a perm case audit, the DOL will tell the employer that the recruitment must be done again, this time under the supervision and approval of the DOL, called “Supervised Recruitment”.

Before job ads can be put up, they must be approved by the Department of Labor. The DOL will also tell you where, when, and how the job ads must be put up. The Department of Labor, not the employer, is also where the applications should be sent. This process is the major part of supervised recruitment.

The sponsoring employer will then have to make a report as part of the immigration process (which is almost exactly the same as the recruitment summary letter made before sending in the PERM application) that shows how it followed the rules for supervised recruitment and fulfilled the requisites that the job position required.

If the employer follows all of the rules and regulations of supervised recruitment, and no qualified applicants apply, the PERM application should be approved by the DOL certifying officer.

Note: Most of the time, supervised recruitment won’t happen unless the certifying officer DOL has a good reason to think there are qualified U.S. workers for the job being applied for or if the employer didn’t advertise the job well enough the first time around. 

PERM Denial After Audit 

If the PERM is turned down at this point, the employer can appeal the decision. This appeal would explain why the employer thinks the PERM application was wrongly turned down. 

PERM Labor Certification 

The certifying officer can then either agree with the argument and approve the application, deny it, or send it to the Board of Alien Labor Certification Appeals (BALCA). Then, BALCA will look at the application and the evidence and make a final, legally binding decision about the case. 

Note that if the certifying officer denies the PERM application after an appeal, the employer can file a “Motion for reconsideration” for a review.

If the final decision on the PERM application is to deny it, the sponsoring employer will have to start a new PERM case for the sponsored employee if they want him or her to keep working with this form of employment authorization.

Alien Labor Certification Appeals

After working hard to submit all the required paperwork and paying the attorney fees that go along with it, a PERM denial without an audit can seem like an unfortunate thing to happen.

Many people who file PERM applications have to deal with this problem. In the next post, we’ll go over the reasons why the submitted PERM application was denied, including your options, what to do next, how to reapply, and more. 

How Can Herman Legal Group LLC Help You?

A consultation with us can bring you peace of mind and together we can cultivate a winning strategy. Contact the Herman Legal Group, a U.S. immigration law firm with over 26 years of experience in representing individuals, families, and companies in all aspects of immigration law, in all 50 states and around the world. 

How to Schedule a Call With Herman Legal Group llc?

Schedule a personal consultation with Attorney Richard Herman by calling 1-216-696-6170, or by booking online. Consultations can be conducted by zoom, skype, WhatsApp, facetime, or in-office. A small investment in seeking a consult can save thousands of dollars and years of frustration due to taking action without the advice of experienced immigration counsel.

The Herman Legal Group respects your valuable time and resources, and we will not conduct a one-hour consultation unless they believe they can provide critical information and hopefully a path to immigration success.

Herman Legal Group LLC will be your support system to file the perm application, handle the perm documents, support perm audits, handle perm denials, follow up through the appeals process, check for requirements of any supporting evidence, etc.

We understand the perm time-sensitive procedure. The Herman Legal Group likely speaks your language.  They speak Spanish, Arabic, Chinese, Russian, and other languages.

At Herman Legal Group, Your Future Matters Most
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