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What is a PERM Priority Date?

What is a PERM Priority Date?

Welcome, aspiring immigrant!
Are you ready to embark on the quest for the coveted green card that can grant you permanent residency in the United States?

Well, the very first step is to figure out your eligibility.
Come, let’s choose together !

If you are a highly skilled professional with a job offer in the US , You have to enter the employment category.

If you have a close family member, who is already a US citizen or a green card holder, you have to enter the family based category.

If you are a savvy investor with significant funds to contribute to the US economy, you have to enter the investment based category.

Congratulations, you have chosen your path now, depending upon your category, you might encounter a special challenge that is the PERM labour certification !

Let’s solve this PERM puzzle
If you are pursuing an employment based green card , get ready to face the PERM.
It’s a labor certification obtained from the Department of Labour ( DOL ) that proves hiring won’t negatively impact US workers.

It’s basically just like a test to ensure a fair playing field.

What’s the PERM priority date?

The PERM priority date refers specifically to the date when the PERM labour certification application is filed with the department of labour. The state becomes significant because it establishes your place in line for a visa to be available in your employment based green card category. The US Department of state publishes a monthly visa bulletin that lists the priority dates for each green card category. By comparing your priority date to the date listed in the bulletin, you can estimate how long you might wait before a visa becomes available for you.

Let’s understand the importance of PERM priority date

The PERM priority date places an essential role in the green card timeline for employment based categories , reason being that it dictates when you can apply for the final stage and ultimately have your green card in your hand. For categories with high backlogs, your priority date can significantly impact your waiting period.

Still confused about how it all works!
Keep reading, you are on the right page!

Here’s how it works-

1. The Ticket Booth (PERM FILING ) – when your employer files the PERM labour certification application with the department of labour, the date becomes your PERM priority date , think of it as the DOL giving you your ticket number.

2. The Ever Changing Line – The US Department of state( DOS ) publishes a monthly visa bulletin. This bulletin lists the cut-off dates for each green card category. If your PERM priority date is earlier than the cut-off date listed for your category in the bulletin, then a visa is likely available for you. You have moved closer to the front of the line.

Well, understanding PERM dates only won’t make much difference, you have to understand the whole green card process!
Let’s understand that :-

1. Eligibility Determination: This initial step involves confirming your eligibility for a green card based on various categories, such as employment, family ties, or investment.

2. Petition Filing (Form I-140): Your employer or sponsor files a petition with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) on your behalf, demonstrating your qualifications for the job offer and the legitimacy of the employer-employee relationship.

3. PERM Labor Certification (if applicable): In certain employment-based categories, the employer must obtain a Program Electronic Review Management (PERM) labor certification from the Department of Labor (DOL). This certification verifies that hiring a foreign worker won’t adversely affect U.S. workers’ wages and working conditions.

4. Priority Date Establishment: The PERM filing date (for categories requiring it) or the I-140 petition filing date (for categories exempt from PERM) becomes your priority date. This date marks your place in line for a visa to be available.

5. Visa Application (Form I-485): Once your priority date becomes current (meaning visas are available for your category), you can file Form I-485, the application to adjust status to permanent resident.

6. Background Checks and Interview: USCIS will conduct background checks and schedule an interview to verify your eligibility and information.

7. Green Card Approval: Upon successful completion of all the mentioned stages, USCIS will grant your green card.


The Green card process can be challenging! So prefer not to go for it all alone! Consider seeking help from an immigration consultant specialising in your desired destination!
Let’s have a look!

CANADA business visa consultant in Qatar – These consultants offer general immigration guidance, and expertise in navigating other countries’ processes.

CANADA work visa service in Qatar – Seeking work opportunities somewhere else, explore these services for a Headstart in a different country.

Our Agency is also Available in India and Dubai

Also, you know what is the benefit of having these consultants?
They can actually help you track your PERM Priority Date movement and understand the intricacies of Visa Bulletin.

Question: Can I improve my PERM Priority Date?

Answer :Unfortunately, no. Once your employer files the application, the date is set. However, you can potentially expedite other parts of the process with the help of an immigration consultant

Question: My PERM application got denied. Does that affect my priority date?

Answer : Unfortunately, yes. A denial can delay the process and potentially impact your overall timeline. However, you have the right to appeal the decision. Consulting with an immigration attorney is crucial in this situation.

Question: My EB category doesn’t require PERM. Does that mean I don’t have a priority date?
Answer : Not exactly. While some categories are exempt from PERM, your priority date is typically established when your employer files Form I-140, the petition for immigrant workers, with USCIS.
Question: My employer filed multiple PERM applications. Which priority date counts?
Answer : The priority date that counts is typically the one established by the most recent approved PERM application. However, if all applications were denied, the initial filing date might hold some weight depending on the specific circumstances. Consulting an attorney is recommended for such scenarios.





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