General Overview of Employment-Based Immigration That Requires Labor Certification

1. Most employment-based cases require certification from the Dept. of Labor (DOL) showing that there are no available, qualified U.S. workers to do the job offered the FN.

  • Labor certification can be accomplished using generic jobs and advertising, known as "Reduction in Recruitment (RIR)."
  • Labor certification requires certain wage rates, geographic locations and skills. If any of these change, the employee will usually need to start over with a new labor certification.
  • A few employment-based cases do not require labor certification, in which case the employer initiates the case at the I-140 stage.

2. All employment-based cases require an Immigrant Visa Petition (I-140) to be filed by the employer to determine what preference category the FN will be in.

  • The employer can only file the I-140 after labor certification is approved by DOL.
  • If the job requires a Master's degree or higher and the FN had that degree when he/she began the job, the FN will be 2nd preference.

3. All employment-based cases require an individual application to adjust status to that of permanent resident, known as AOS.

  • The applicant can only file for AOS after the USCIS approves the employer's I-140, and the employee's priority date is current.
  • AOS includes a separate application for Employment Authorization Document (EAD) to ensure right to work.
  • AOS includes a separate application for Advance Parole (AP) to ensure right to travel.
  • The AOS application focuses on whether the FN is excludable for some personal reason.
  • It includes detailed background information and documentation about the individual, including medical exams, fingerprints, birth certificates, etc.
  • AOS is normally filed at USCIS Service Center where the employee lives.

4. The time line for the typical process is as follows:

RIR Labor Certification (Filed with DOL)
6-18 Months
(DOL Regions Process times vary and slow downs are common due to work load/resource allocations by DOL).
I-140 Immigration Visa Petition (Filed with USCIS Regional Service Center)
4-12 Months
(USCIS time varies based on preference petition category and geographic location).
AOS Adjustment Of Status (Filed with USCIS Regions Service Centers)
8-36 Months
(USCIS time varies based on priority dates and workload/resource allocation by USCIS).

Contact Us

Your Name *
Your Email *
Confirm Your Email *
Your Contact Number
Your Question *
Answer the Question*
Indicated Required *

Submit a Review

Your Name *
Subject *
Email *
Phone Number *
Your Review *
Answer the Question*
Indicates Required *