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Foreign Labor Certification

The Foreign Labor Certification Program is federally funded through a contract with the U.S. Department of Labor (USDOL). Foreign labor certification programs permit U.S. employers to hire foreign workers on a temporary or permanent basis to fill jobs essential to the U.S. economy. Certification may be obtained in cases where it can be demonstrated that there are insufficient qualified U.S. workers available and willing to perform the work at wages that meet or exceed the prevailing wage paid for that occupation in the area of intended employment. Prior to bringing foreign workers into the U.S., employers must file a labor certification application.


  • 20 CFR Part 655 Subparts A, B, H Part 656 Subpart C, D

Types of Labor Certification Applications


  • Foreign labor certification programs are designed to assure that the admission of foreign workers into the United States on a permanent or temporary basis will not adversely affect the job opportunities, wages, and working conditions of U.S. workers. The employer must obtain a prevailing wage determination that is valid either on the date recruitment begins or the date of filing a complete Application for Temporary Employment Certification with the USDOL. The employer must offer and advertise the position to all potential workers at a wage at least equal to the prevailing wage obtained from the NPWC.
  • To request a prevailing wage determination (PWD) for a Nonagricultural Immigration Program (PERM, H-1B, H-1B1, H-2B and E-3) employers must complete the ETA Form 9141 and submit it to the National Prevailing Wage Center (NPWC). Electronic filing is strongly recommended. The USDOL's Flag System has been updated to allow users to electronically submit requests for PWDs to the NPWC.
  • For non-electronic submission, the Prevailing Wage Application form can be found at: www.dol.gov/agencies/eta/foreign-labor/forms
  • USCIS (U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service) Information, forms, fees, and filing instructions for the final stage of the Foreign Labor Certification process.
  • For more information about the Labor Certification application process, regulations, directives, and program updates please visit: www.dol.gov/agencies/eta/foreign-labor

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New Hampshire Employment Security (NHES)
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