Labor certification is the process by which an employer recruits for a position, to determine if there are any available, willing, minimally qualified persons for the position. Fundamentally, the Department of Labor’s labor certification irotects the U.S. workforce first. It then secondly enables U.S. employers to petition for foreign workers, where no U.S. workers are available.
There are some occupations that the Department of Labor has long-determined there is a shortage of workers for, such as professional nurses and physical therapists. For these occupations, employers can forego most of the recruitment process. There are other occupations and areas where it is widely known that there is a shortage of available workers, such as is the case with physicians who are willing to working in a designated health professional shortage area.
Sometimes, a position is hard to fill because it requires very specific training or a large measure of industry-specific experience. The U.S. labor force and the employment needs to the U.S. are diverse, encompassing many factors.
The labor certification process is working well for employers. It takes an investment in time and money to pursue a labor certification and permanent residence for an employee, but this is one area of immigration where processing times are relatively good.
Each employer has to make ten attestations with a labor certification application. These attestations capture much of what is required of employers and the factors that need to be considered in pursuing an application. Here they are:
By virtue of my signature below, I HEREBY CERTIFY the following conditions of employment:
1. The offered wage equals or exceeds the prevailing wage and I will pay at least the prevailing wage.
2. The wage is not based on commissions, bonuses or other incentives, unless I guarantees a wage paid on a weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly basis that equals or exceeds the prevailing wage.
3. I have enough funds available to pay the wage or salary offered the alien.
4. I will be able to place the alien on the payroll on or before the date of the alien’s proposed entrance int o the United States.
5. The job opportunity does not involve unlawful discrimination by race, creed, color, national origin, age, sex, religion, handicap, or citizenship.
6. The job opportunity is not: a. Vacant because the former occupant is on strike or is being locked out in the course of a labor dispute involving a work stoppage; or b. At issue in a labor dispute involving a work stoppage.
7. The job opportunity’s terms, conditions, and occupational environment are not contrary to Federal, state or local law.
8. The job opportunity has been and is clearly open to any U.S. worker.
9. The U.S. workers who applied for the job opportunity were rejected for lawful job-related reasons.
10.The job opportunity is for full-time, permanent employment for an employer other than the alien.