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Can I get a Green Card from my Boss?


In case you were wondering. an employer can sponsor you for a green card! If your boss is willing to go through the necessary process of labor certification, then they will be able to start the petition for you. What can you do to get this process started? Nothing! This process requires no work or filing from you but it may help to know the general process.  So here is a handy guide on how to get a green card from your boss.

Step One:

The first step to get a green card from your boss is to determine your job classification. There are several different categories based on what kind of work you will be doing in the United States. These categories will determine if you can skip the next step and what priority you will have later down the line.

  • EB1: Persons of Extraordinary Ability in the Sciences, Arts, Education, Business or Athletics, Outstanding Professors and researchers, Managers and Executives Subject to International Transfer to the United States.
  • EB2: Persons of Exceptional Ability in the Sciences, arts, or business, Advanced degree professionals, qualified alien physicians who practice medicine in an area of the US which is underdeveloped.
  • EB3: Skilled Workers, Professional Workers, unskilled workers.
  • EB4: Religious workers, Employees of the US Government Abroad.

Step Two:

If you fall into the EB3 category, your employer will have to get a wage determination first before you can get a green card from your boss. To do this, your boss must send your job qualifications to the Department of Labor. Your qualifications must not deviate unnecessarily from those contained on For instance, if you are an engineer, your employer can’t also include that the qualified employee must also play guitar. That would be unnecessary unless there was some compelling reason, he could prove with evidence, that a guitar-playing engineer is the only one qualified for the position. A common additional qualification that is accepted is a foreign language. Your boss will still have to show why, with evidence, that language is necessary but they should be able to show that your clients or other employees only speak that language.

Once the Department of Labor has given your boss the prevailing wage for someone with those qualifications, they must advertise the position. If there are other people qualified for the position who would willingly take the job for that salary, then you cannot get a green card from your boss. They will have to hire that person instead or abandon the process.

Step Three:

In the next step to get a green card from your boss is for them to file an ETA From 9089 to get labor certification from the U.S. Department of Labor. In that form, your boss will describe the process they went through to try to find a qualified employee in that state. At the end of the application, they will state that the only qualified employee they found was you! They will name you as the alien they wish to hire and The Department of Labor will make a determination between 1 month and 6 months based on your qualifications for the job. Once your boss gets the certification, you are one step closer to get a green card from your boss.

Step Four:

After your labor certification is approved your boss will have 180 days to file an I-140. The I-140 is the petition to get a green card from your boss. They must file with it a certified Form 9089 and evidence that you meet the qualifications specified on the Form 9089. Once filed, your application will be thrown into a pile with the rest of the I-140 applications until the selection process begins for that fiscal year. The selection process is essentially a lottery, there is no guarantee your application will be selected. However, you will have priority over other applications based on the category you fell into on step one. For instance, if you are in the EB1 category, your petition will be more likely to be granted rather than if you are in the EB3 category.

Until the quota for that year is exhausted, you will have to wait. You may be able to file a work permit in the meantime and an I-485 application for a green card while you wait but other than that, there is nothing more we can do.

Step Five:

If you have been selected then congratulations! You get a green card from your boss and the privilege of working towards United States Citizenship. Make sure that you file your I-485 and work permit if you have not yet. You will not be able to start your new employment until October of that year. If you are abroad, then you will be able to come on your new visa after receiving it from the U.S. consulate.

For those who are not selected, find out why your application was denied. If you were merely not selected, then you are free to try again next year. There may also have been issues with your case, you may want to correct them before filing again next year.

If you would like to get a green card from your boss or future employer, talk to them and see if they would be willing to consult with an immigration attorney if you live near Fairfax, Loudon, and Arlington and Prince William counties.