As a Miami immigration lawyer, I find that many people often have preconceived notions on how one goes about obtaining a green card. I have had some people tell me that all it takes to get a green card is for someone to get through a job offer in the U.S. This could not be further from the truth. There are certain requirements that an applicant must meet. Below are some frequently asked questions about the process.
What kinds of criteria does an immigrant need to meet in order to get a green card via a job in the U.S.?
The applicant must be able to demonstrate the following, including but not limited to:
- The offered job must be full-time and permanent. Note that a housekeeping position and a professorial position can both be full time and permanent
- The applicant must demonstrate that the employer couldn’t find a qualified U.S. worker for the job on offer to the applicant
- The U.S. Labor Department must be able to certify the job (with few exceptions, this holds for most job positions)
If you have any questions in regard to the above, I would strongly urge you to speak with a Miami immigration lawyer.
One of the questions your Miami Immigration Lawyer will ask you – will the U.S. Labor Department Certify the Job?
With few exceptions, most job positions will require a certification from the U.S. Labor Department. If you achieved international recognition and/or are an extremely well-known professional in your field, you may be able to bypass the “labor certification process altogether.
However, for most positions, the applicant’s employer in the U.S. must demonstrate to the satisfaction of the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) that no qualified U.S. worker is willing and able to take the job. The applicant’s employer must go through an actual recruitment process, advertising the job according to strict DOL specifications and offering at least the going rate of pay.
Note: If the recruitment turns up even one qualified U.S. worker willing to take the job, then, although the employer is not required to hire the U.S. worker, the job nevertheless cannot be certified for a foreign worker. That will bring the green card process to a dead-end.
As a Miami immigration lawyer, I always ask prospective applicants this very important question, “will your employer will be willing to go through the (oftentimes lengthy and burdensome) labor certification process for you?” If the answer is yes, your application has a chance of succeeding.
Why is it important to find out if my employer will go through the Labor Certification process?
The labor certification process is designed to protect American workers. As such, the Labor Department requires that all the costs of labor certification be borne by employers, not employees – and this includes any attorney fees as well as the advertising costs.
In addition to these burdens, the employers must also bear the time costs. Even if the employer hires a Miami immigration attorney to help with the labor certification — a very good idea given the complexity of the process — the Labor Department explicitly prohibits the employer’s attorney from direct involvement in the recruitment. As such, the employer bears the brunt of reviewing resumes, interviewing candidates, and reporting why the particular candidates do not meet the requirements of the job.
Again, because of the complexity of the Labor certification process, and the myriad of details that need to go into every application to ensure that the applicant puts his/her best foot forward, I would strongly suggest that you speak with a Miami immigration lawyer to discuss your options.
Discuss all available options.
I cannot stress this enough. The most prudent thing that a prospective green card applicant can do is to consult with a Miami immigration lawyer to discuss all available options. With recent changes in immigration law, this is the only way to ensure that you are putting your best foot forward in submitting a strong application.
If you would like more information on green cards, or on the Labor Certification process, please contact Miami immigration lawyer Michael G. Murray, Esq. at (305) 895-2500 or visit our website at murraysilva.com.