Employers, in California or in other locations across the country, who wish to employ foreign workers are required to obtain all necessary legal documents in order to do so. Labor certification will need to be issued for this purpose and must be obtained through the Department of Labor (DOL). This is not something that is handed out to everyone, and certain requirements must be met before this certification is granted.
In order for employers to receive approval to hire foreign workers, they must first show that there are no viable candidates for the desired positions currently residing in the United States. It must also be determined that hiring a foreign worker will not have a negative effect on working conditions and wages. For this to happen, an employer would first need to request a labor certification application from the Department of Labor. The DOL would then need to send this information on to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).
Once an application for labor certification is received by the DOL, that date of filing is used a priority date by USCIS. Applications that have been certified by the DOL must be submitted to the USCIS within 180 days, along with an Immigrant Petition for Alien Worker form. After the 180-day window, the certification will expire, and if there is still a desire to hire a foreign worker, the process would need to be started over again.
Obtaining the proper legal documents to hire employees from outside the country can be difficult and time consuming. A number of issues may arise that can delay the process or result in a request being denied. Legal assistance is available to help California employers who are seeking labor certification understand all necessary requirements, and obtain and submit all appropriate applications and supporting documents.
Source: doleta.gov, “Permanent Labor Certification“, Accessed on March 23, 2015