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Dear Editor:
In response to Mr. Murray's query, whether to file a labor certification now or "wait" for PERM is a non-issue. The NPRM on PERM in the Federal Register indicates that the coming of PERM ends nearly three decades of hard fought regulatory guidelines providing American employers with fairness in their efforts to immigrate workers. With PERM, there will be no: (1) business necessity to justify accurate and real job requirements; (2) loss of 5% wage factor that exists due to inherent inaccuracies of wage surveys; (3) mandatory recruitment requirements in excess of normal requirements for industry/employer; (4) new extensive record keeping requirements; (5) elimination of all job skills and experience allowed by decisional law obtained through employment with overseas affiliates, or other jobs with same employer; etc. There's a punitive structure that allows for no hearing, exceptions or justifiable explanations (e.g. company's records destroyed in fire) and mandate a finding of fraud against the employer for shortcomings. Maybe better processing times - maybe. Whether PERM comes is still a question. PERM will essentially strip current fair process from employers. There will be an option to convert to PERM for pending cases filed now, so what possible downside is there? The priority date, determined by filing date, controls when the person will be able to apply for their green card. If you wait and I don't, my cases will have an earlier priority date than yours. Even if DOL provides better processing under PERM, it will be irrelevant since the priority date will control in the end. With the return of quota cut-off dates of many years likely in certain EB categories, the one who files first will be better off than the one who files later even if the later case gets approved faster. File the labor certification now.

Peter Larabee