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Frequently Asked Questions

In this Section

How long does a permanent residency process take?

What is the Labor Certification?

What is "Special Handling"?

What is the I-140?

What is the I-485

Are staff eligible for CU sponsorship?

How long does a permanent residency process take?
Processing times vary depending upon the preference category being pursued. Processes that do not require the Labor Certification may be completed faster.

What is the Labor Certification?
The Labor Certification, also known as "PERM," is a required step of some employment-based permanent residence categories. The purpose of it is to test the market to see if there is a qualified, available, and willing U.S. worker for the position being offered to the nonimmigrant pursuant to permanent residency. Certification of the PERM does not constitute authorization to stay and/or work in the U.S.

What is "Special Handling"?
The PERM for college or university faculty can be processed through special handling if the following criteria additional to the standard PERM requirements are met:

  • The job opportunity was advertised in a national professional journal;
  • The employer conducted a competitive recruitment and selection process;
  • The PERM is filed within 18 months of the job offer date.

What is the I-140?
The I-140, Immigrant Petition for Alien Worker, is either the first or second step of the employment-based permanent residency process. The purpose is normally to show that the job has been certified by the Department of Labor; the employer's job offer still stands; the employer has the ability to pay the worker the required wage; and the worker meets the qualifying criteria. Approval of the  I-140 does not constitute authorization to stay and/or work in the U.S.

What is the I-485
The I-485, Application to Adjust Status, is the final step of the permanent residency process. The purpose of this step is primarily to conduct an evaluation of the nonimmigrant's background. Any of your qualifying dependents may be included in the permanent residence process during this step. The filing of the I-485 step may take place when your "priority date" is "current." Approval of the I-485 results in issuance of the Permanent Resident card.

Are staff eligible for CU sponsorship?
Only in rare circumstances do staff at CU qualify for CU sponsorship.