Labor certification is an immigration process step in the United States of America that aims to protect U.S. workers and the U.S. labor market by making sure that foreign workers who are seeking immigrant visa classifications are not at all displacing equally qualified U.S. workers. The temporary options available for US employers who want to hire foreign and non-immigrant workers on a temporary but long-term bases include H-1B visas, L-1 visas, and TN status, which are sufficient in meeting the needs of the employer and employee. If the US employers want to hire a foreign worker permanently, there is a complex sponsorship involved wherein the worker must obtain a green card that can take year to be processed, and the initial step is to get a labor certification.
Labor certification refers to the process of proving there is no US worker qualified for the position being offered. If the labor certification process shows that there are qualified or minimally qualified US workers for the said position, then the foreign worker is not allowed to fill the position on a permanent basis. It does not necessarily mean that the foreign workers will be replaced by a qualified US worker. Labor certifications are issued by the Secretary of Labor, containing attestations by U.S. employers as to the numbers of U.S. workers available t undertake the employment sought by an applicant, as well as the effect of the foreign worker’s employment on the wages and working conditions of the U.S. workers similarly employed. To determine the labor availability in the United States, the location and the time of visa application where the foreign applicant wishes to work must be determined. It is the responsibility of the employer to file the application. However, the foreign employee can greatly benefit from understanding how the program is utilized on his behalf. Although this may seem a long and tedious process for U.S. employers, they can provide utmost protection tot heir foreign workers, while being able to reap the benefits of working with them.
In general, it is the responsibility and mandate of the U.S. Department of Labor to ensure that the admission of foreign workers to work in the United States will not adversely affect the U.S. workers’ job opportunities, working conditions, and wages. Once the permanent labor certification application has been approved, then the employer needs to seek the immigration authorization from USCIS. For more information about labor certification, feel free to check our website or homepage now. It is always good to stay informed about your labor rights, regardless if you are a foreign worker seeking for a permanent working visa, or a U.S worker knowing your labor rights.