EB-3 Visa Classification
Professionals, Skilled Workers, or Unskilled Workers
The 3rd Preference Employment-Based Immigrant Petition is a path for professionals, skilled workers, or unskilled workers to obtain lawful permanent resident status (LPR) and a Green Card. This classification requires that the foreign worker be sponsored by a U.S. employer (the Petitioner) for a permanent and non-seasonal job.
Our attorneys guide corporate and institutional clients that desire to sponsor foreign nationals to come work in the U.S. on a permanent basis. We will advise you about whether the prospective applicant meets the requirements specified on the labor certification. We work with the organization to file a PERM (for the Program Electronic Review Management system) labor certification with the Department of Labor (DOL). By filing the PERM, we request the DOL to certify that there are no willing, able, and qualified U.S. workers available to fill the job offered to the foreign worker.
The PERM labor certification
Whether applying as a Professional, Skilled Worker, or Unskilled Worker, the foreign national must meet all requirements specified on the labor certification. Essential elements of the offered job for PERM application purposes are:
- The job title,
- Job duties and responsibilities, including any travel requirements ad any supervisory responsibility, and
- The minimum requirements to perform the job (such as education, experience, or training).
Our attorneys will prepare all documents and support letters required to demonstrate that the foreign employee qualifies for the offered job described in the PERM application.
The PERM labor certification involves 2 major steps:
- Recruitment: The sponsoring employer must advertise the job position and review resumes for more than 30 days, but less than 180 days, prior to filing the PERM application to ensure that there are no other qualified U.S. workers available. Advertising must include a Sunday newspaper listing unless no such listing is available in the area. This process involves compiling a record of copies of advertising placed, resumes collected, and notes about the process. There is no listing of acceptable journals or publications for recruitment.
- Prevailing Wage Determination: The employer is also required to offer at least the prevailing wage for the position, as determined by the DOL, based on the job requirements and location of employment. A prevailing wage determination from DOL must be obtained before filing the PERM application and after recruitment comes to an end.
The Immigrant Visa Petition
After the PERM application is certified, our attorneys work will work with you to prepare and timely file the immigrant visa petition, naming the foreign worker as the beneficiary, with the USCIS. For EB-3 classification, the foreign national can apply as a:
- Professional, defined as a member of the professions holding at least a bachelor’s degree in the field. The Immigration and Nationality Act defines a profession as one of the following: Architects, Engineers, Lawyers, Physicians, Surgeons, Teachers in elementary schools, colleges, academies, or seminaries, or any occupation for which a U.S. bachelor’s degree or its foreign equivalent is the minimum requirement to enter the occupation.
- Skilled Worker, defined as an individual with at least two years of training or experience in the field. To qualify as a skilled worker, the foreign national must meet the educational, training, or experience requirements of the job opportunity. Relevant post-secondary education may be considered as training. Skilled workers must also perform functions for which qualified workers are not available in the United States.
- Unskilled Worker, defined as an individual with less than two years of training or experience in the field, or no training or experience requirement.
Acquiring LPR Status
Once the foreign worker establishes eligibility for permanent residence under the EB-3 category through the worker’s employer’s approved Form I-140 petition, our attorneys will evaluate whether the foreign worker can seek LPR status by filing either:
- An AOS application with the USCIS to adjust the worker’s lawful status from nonimmigrant to immigrant while in the US.
Depending on the specific circumstances, our attorneys may recommend filing an AOS application with the employer’s immigrant visa petition. This “concurrent” filing could offer added benefits for foreign workers already in the U.S., including faster processing times, allowing the foreign worker and their family members to obtain general employment authorization and permission to travel abroad, and protecting the foreign worker against unforeseen changes in employment by allowing them green card portability.
- Consular Processing at a U.S. consulate or embassy abroad.
The overall process through the PERM and I-140 Petition for the EB-3 is illustrated below: