Labor Certification Procedures for Teaching Faculty
Employment-based sponsorship for permanent residency is an employer-driven process. A department will only consider sponsoring positions for permanent residency if the positions are eligible for such sponsorship and it is clearly demonstrated to be in the best interest of the department to do so. Each department will determine in its sole discretion whether or not to sponsor a foreign national. OP 70.38: Employment-based Permanent Residency Petitions must be reviewed in determining sponsorship eligibility.
TTU will use the labor certification process for a teaching faculty member if we can demonstrate that the faculty member is better qualified than any U.S. citizen or permanent resident applicant for the position. The position must be advertised, prevailing wages and working conditions must be offered, and qualified U.S. workers must be given an opportunity to know about and to apply for the position. The application for labor certification for a teaching faculty member must be filed within 18 months of the selection of the foreign national employee "pursuant to a competitive recruitment and selection process."
Permanent Residence (a Green Card) through Labor Certification will involve 3 steps:
- Labor Certification--Application by the OIA for labor certification for the teaching faculty member only if member was chosen as the best qualified, available candidate after an academic search process and selection for a permanent tenure-track position.
- I-140--Upon receiving a certified labor certification, the OIA will file with USCIS a Form I-140, Immigrant Petition for Alien Worker and department must pay filing fee.
- I-485--Once the I-140 is approved, the foreign national employee is responsible for personally pursuing adjustment of status on Form I-485, Application to Adjust Status to Permanent Residence, in a timely manner, if an immigrant visa is available. Since the I-485 is a personal application, the OIA is unable to assist with the I-485 preparation or process for TTU employees. Employees can complete the application on their own or can retain their own independent attorney to complete the I-485 petition.
LABOR CERTIFICATION PROCEDURES:
OIA will work with department in obtaining the following documentation. Advertisements must* include the following:
- Job Title,
- Duties, and
- Minimum Requirements for the position.
*At least one of the advertisements must be either in a national print professional journal OR the ad can be in an electronic or web-based national professional journal in which the ad must be posted for at least 30 calendar days on the journal's website. Documentation of the placement of an advertisement in an electronic or web-based national professional journal must include evidence of the start and end dates of the advertisement placement and the text of the advertisement.
- A written statement signed by the department chair or dean "outlining in detail the
complete recruitment procedure" and providing the following specific information:
1. "the total number of applicants for the job opportunity";
2. "the specific lawful job-related reasons why the alien is more qualified than each U.S. worker who applied for the job".
- A final report from the faculty, student, and/or administrative body making the recommendation or selection of the faculty member, at the completion of the competitive recruitment and selection process.
- A copy of at least one advertisement for the job opportunity placed in a national PRINT professional journal, giving the name and the date(s) of publication, and which states the job title, duties and requirements. This should be a photocopy of the page from the journal and a photocopy of the cover of that issue to identify the journal and the issue. Or if an electronic or web-based national professional journal, then a photocopy of the ad showing posting for at least 30 calendar days on the journal's website. Evidence must include the start and end dates of the advertisement posting and the text of the advertisement.
- Information about and documentation of any other recruitment efforts undertaken, including copies of letters sent to other institutions or professional colleagues, postings on electronic bulletin boards, or any other attempts to locate suitable applicants for the position. We must demonstrate that the University has made a good faith effort to locate qualified U.S. workers for the position, so documentation of all recruitment efforts is important. Be sure that the same advertisement is placed in every venue.
- A written statement from the department chair or dean attesting to the degree of the faculty member's educational or professional qualifications and academic achievements.
- A copy of the offer letter from the University to the prospective faculty member.
- A copy of the Labor Certification Notice. This notice must be posted in a conspicuous place in the hiring department for ten consecutive business days. ISSS will supply this form, properly completed, to the appropriate department for posting. The notice will also be placed in the Office of International Affairs and the Personnel office. If any in-house media was used to advertise the position, the notice must also be placed for 10 consecutive business days in the same in-house media, whether electronic or paper.
Once we have all the documentation, we will submit a prevailing wage determination with the Department of Labor as required as part of the PERM process. Once a favorable determination has been obtained, we will submit an application for labor certification to the U.S. Department of Labor's Certifying Officer. The Certifying Officer makes the decision and notifies us.
Procedures Following Labor Certification
Once the U.S. Department of Labor has approved the application for labor certification, the OIA can petition the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) on behalf of the faculty member. The OIA will file a Form I-140 with the approved labor certification, appropriate supporting documentation and a check for $700 made payable to the "Department of Homeland Security." The sponsoring department is required to pay for the immigration fee.
Questions regarding the Labor Certification process should be directed to the Lead Administrator in ISSS at the Office of International Affairs at 742-3667.
Address601 Indiana Avenue, Lubbock, TX 79409-5004