A PERM Labor Certification is issued by the DOL after the employer tests the labor market to determine if qualified US workers are available before offering the job to a foreign worker. A PERM Labor Certification from the DOL is required before an employment-based immigrant petition can be filed for the foreign worker in the following preference categories- EB-2 – Professionals holding Advanced Degrees, or Persons of Exceptional Ability in the Arts, Sciences, or Business
EB-3 – Skilled Workers, Professionals Holding Baccalaureate Degrees and, Other Workers
An I-140 petition is submitted with the USCIS in order to classify a foreign worker as an immigrant under one of the following employment based visa categories.
EB-1 – Persons with extraordinary ability in sciences, arts, education, business or athletics (EB-1A); outstanding professors and researchers(EB-1B); or Inter-company transfer of executivesand managers (EB-1C).
EB-2 – Professionals holding Advanced Degrees, or Persons of Exceptional Ability in the Arts, Sciences, or Business
EB-3 – Skilled Workers, Professionals Holding Baccalaureate Degrees and Other Workers
An I-360 petition is submitted by religious organizations in order to classify religious workers as an immigrant. This typically requires at least 2 years of continuous employment in a religious position prior to the application.
This category applies to immediate relatives of US Citizens namely, spouse (IR-1), unmarried child under 21 (IR-2), orphan adopted outside the US (IR-3), orphan adopted within the US (IR-4) & parents of children over 21 years (IR-5). There is no annual limit on the number of visas that may be issued for this category.
This category applies to certain relatives of US Citizens and Permanent Residents. Section 201 of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) sets an annual minimum family-sponsored preference limit of 226,000 and Section 203(a) of the INA prescribes preference classes for allotment of family-sponsored visas into the following categories:
Unmarried sons and daughters of US Citizens (F1)
Spouses and Children of Permanent Residents (F2A)
Unmarried Sons and Daughters of Permanent Residents (F2B)
Married Sons and Daughters of US Citizens (F3)
Siblings of US Citizens (F4)
I-485 petitions/Consular Processing
Once a foreign national has been classified as an immigrant either under an employment-based or family-based category, the foreign national must either file an adjustment of status (AOS) application or apply for an immigrant visa at the US Consulate (Consular process). This step is usually based on the availability of visa numbers and is typically defined by what is called a “priority date”. The Department of State publishes a Visa Bulletin every month, which will help you determine your place in the line. Our office can help you navigate this process with either USCIS or with NVC/US Consulate so that you can take the final step to becoming a permanent resident of the United States.
The different pathways to permanent residency are complex as they involve interacting with various government agencies and immigration officers. We will guide you throughout the process and make it as painless as possible while achieving your goal of permanent residency in the United States.