Fisher Legal Group


The terms EB-2 and EB-3 refer to an immigration category called employment-based (EB) immigration. Individuals can immigrate to the United States based on family petitions or their employer’s petition. There are many other categories for green cards, but EB means employment based. EB-2 and EB-3 are two different categories which, in simple terms, mean that there are different wait times to get the actual green card. Both categories have a limited number of green cards that the immigration agency can give per year. In simple terms, the difference between EB-2 and EB-3 is the level of education that an individual has.

When people refer to an EB-2 employment green card, they generally refer to individuals who have obtained a master’s degree or higher. Usually, but not always, for this kind of category, an individual has to have an employer petition for him or her for a green card. The EB-2 category also allows individuals to self-petition if they are PhD professors, researchers at universities, if they have outstanding or exceptional abilities, or if they fall into a category called national interest waiver. The EB-3 is an employment-based category which requires at least a bachelor’s degree, and the individual has to have an employer sponsor him or her for a green card for a position that requires a bachelor’s degree. Depending on the category of employment-based petition and visa bulletin priority dates, after the employer’s petition is approved, the individual can apply for a green card based on that approved petition when their priority date becomes current.



The process is actually pretty complicated. An employer would have to send a request in the form of an application called labor certification or in general terms PERM to the US Department of Labor, informing them that they want to hire an individual for a specific position. The employer has to describe the position, the minimum job requirements, the salary which is requested from the Department of Labor before the labor certification is filed. This is a process called PERM.

Before an employer can file a labor certification, they have to request the prevailing wage for that specific position from the US Department of Labor. After the US Department of Labor comes back with the salary required for that position based on the job description and the requirements, then the employer would have to advertise the position. The advertising process is pretty complicated, and it depends on the position category.

Advertising would have to have specific criteria. For example, advertising for some certain positions would have to be conducted in at least two Sunday publications among five advertising venues. After the employer advertises the position, they have to collect applications and select a certain number of individual applicants to interview for the position. The employer has to conduct the recruitment and prepare a recruitment report. When they are ready to file the PERM application, they have to attest to the US Department of Labor that there are no US citizens among the applicant pool that are suitable for the position.

If the employer identifies a US citizen for that position, then it’s up to the employer if they want to stop the recruitment or hire that US citizen, but in any case, the PERM process stops. When the employer identifies that there are no US citizens suitable for that position, then the employer files an application with the US Department of Labor called labor certification. The employer has to identify the name of the person, the position they are hiring them for, the salary they are offering and the experience of the person that they want to hire. After that process is over and if the US Department of Labor approves that application, then the employer is free to file a petition with the immigration agency USCIS. The petition is called I-140. If the immigration agency approves the employer’s I-140 petition, then the individual for whom the employer filed that petition is free to apply for a green card depending if their priority date is current on the visa bulletin. The remaining application process for a green card is straightforward.

For more information on EB-2 & EB-3 Employment Visas, an initial consultation is your next best step. Get the information and legal answers you are seeking by calling today.

Fisher Legal Group

Get your questions answered - Call for an initial consultation or assessment of your needs (646) 453-4170.