The employment-based green card process most generally consists of three steps: 1) Labor Certification, 2) Immigrant Petition for Alien Worker, and 3) Application for Adjustment of Status (green card). Depending on many factors, each employee and employer may or may not be required to complete each step of this process. The first date one of the above applications/petitions are filed on an employee and/or employers behalf is referred to as the beneficiary employee’s priority date, which is used by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services and the Department of State to determine when an Immigrant Visa is available. You may access the U.S. State Department Visa Bulletin to learn which priority dates are currently being processed.
The Immigration and Nationality Act provides a yearly minimum of 140,000 employment-based immigrant visas, which are divided into five preference categories.