PERM Prevailing Wage Determination FAQ

PERM Prevailing Wage Determination FAQ

The PERM prevailing wage is in place to ensure employers pay their employees the minimum wage for that particular job. The organization responsible for determining this, National Prevailing Wage Center (NPWC) bases its determinations on data gathered throughout the United States. In order to make this determination, the NPWC aligns the job offered with the geographic region and skill level required for the position as well as education and required supervision. Keep reading for PERM prevailing wage determination FAQ and examples.

Employer Requirements for PERM Labor Certification

There are very stringent requirements the employer must follow for PERM labor certification.

  • Position must be for a full-time job offer in the U.S.
  • Requirements for the job shouldn’t be tailored to the foreign worker’s skill set
  • Wage must adhere to the prevailing wage requirements (be greater or equal to)
  • Demonstrate that there are no qualified domestic workers for the position and that the foreign worker will not affect the wages or conditions for U.S. workers

The foreign applicant must also meet a set of criteria. They must possess the work and educational requirements when the LC is file and must have valid U.S. while in the country.

In certain scenarios, the employer can request that the prevailing wage determination be based on a private wage survey. To explore this option it’s best to consult an immigration attorney with experience handling private wage surveys.

 PERM Prevailing Wage Determination Validity Period

For the prevailing wage determination, PERM applicants can request it either through mail or the iCert online system for their application.

U.S. Department of Labor
Employment & Training Administration
National Prevailing Wage and Help Desk Center
ATTN: PWD Request
1341 G Street, NW – Suite 201
Washington, DC 20005 – 3105

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. What documents are required for PERM labor certification? 

You’ll need a local Labor Market Analysis (evidence that U.S. workers are incapable/ineligible of performing this employment).This includes job orders, newspaper ads, prints of website job ads, U.S. Employer Audit File, immigrant petition and completed Form ETA 9089.

Q. How long does it take for the DOL to process a PERM application?

If you opt for the electronic route and include the audit adjudicating process, the DOL estimates that a clean application takes fewer than sixty days to complete. The time for audited cases may vary depending on what is requested. While we can’t say for certain how long your processing will take it should be around 60-90 days.

Q. What is the process for non-professional jobs? 

To satisfy these requirements, the employer must first place a job order with the state workforce agency (for a period of 30 days) and place an ad in 2 consecutive Sunday editions of a local newspaper.

Q. What happens after filing ETA Form 9089?

After filing this form you’ll have to wait a few months for the DOL to adjudicate the PERM. From there they can either approve the PERM, deny it or conduct an audit. If it’s audited, the Department of Labor will ask the employer to submit additional forms of evidence. Since this can become burdensome it’s advised to seek an immigration attorney.

Q. What is the 30-day hold period? 

The 30-day hold or ‘quiet’ period is the time frame after completing most of the recruitment and filing the application. Once the PERM LC has been filed, employers must wait an extra 30 days for any additional job applications to come in.

Q. What if the employer finds qualified applicants in the U.S.? 

If during recruitment, the employer is able to find willing and able U.S. workers and they accept the position then the PERM application will end at that point. At a later point, if the employer chooses, they can restart the PERM process.

PERM Prevailing Wage Determination Summary 

Both employees and employees need to take the necessary time to review the PERM form during the filing process. Our PERM immigration lawyers can assist you in meeting the strict government deadlines as well as filing any necessary documents. If you receive a request for an audit, we will prepare and submit the paperwork in a timely manner.

PERM Prevailing Wage Determination Example 

The determination you receive is valid from 90 days to a year. As soon as the employer receives the prevailing wage designated by the center, the employer is required to submit the recruitment file and PERM Labor Certification within the validity period.

To demonstrate the importance of filing the PERM petition within the prevailing wage determination period, here’s an example:

Company X intends to file a labor certification for Mr. Jones. Company X runs an ad for the PERM position 1 day before receiving their prevailing wage determination. The remaining ads are run during the prevailing wage validity period but it expires one day prior to Company X submitting the PERM petition. Due to faulty timing, the case will be denied because they did not begin recruiting or file the petition at the right time. 

This situation could have been improved had Company X started the recruited process and/or filed the PERM petition during the validity period. It likely would have been approved had these been the circumstances. Again, it’s ideal to work alongside a knowledgeable attorney who has experience with PERM prevailing wage determination to avoid any sort of delays or denials like this.

Click here to learn about PERM recruitment steps.

Free Immigration Consultations

SGM Law Group offers free consultations to individuals/businesses who are looking to retain a law firm to apply for Employment Based or Investment-Based Immigration petitions. Have more concerns related to PERM prevailing wage determination FAQ or examples? Contact us by phone or email.

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