Confused about the difference between NIW vs PERM, unless you are an immigration specialist you can’t have an overhand over every form and policy. This can be answered by our immigration specialists, so here it is.


The PERM is a form to the gateway for a green card that is issued by the Department of Labor.

It is required for almost every classification of employment green cards although there are some exceptions like EB-1 and certain cases of EB-2.

Because of this, it is one of the steps taken by petitioners for a green card while applying.


You must file an ETA-9089 application to obtain a PERM Labor certification.

However, this can only be filed if your employer has gone through the requisite recruitment process the reason for the PERM requirement.

The PERM requirement process involves having your employer place job ads using three distinct methods.

  • Going to your workforce agency and placing a job order there for a minimum of 30 days.
  • Having the job posted in the largest locally circulated paper in the area in the Sunday Edition.
  • Recruiting using three of the following steps:
  • Your employer’s website
  • A job listing such as or indeed
  • Recruiting at a job fair
  • Placing an ad in the radio or television program
  • Posting a job at a campus placement office
  • Recruiting in college campus
  • Placing an ad in a smaller or ethnic newspaper
  • Incentivizing your employers to refer applicants.
  • Using a private employment firm.
  • Placing an ad with a professional or trade publication.

Further Steps

Once the job order has run its 30-day course, the employer needs to wait for another 30 days before filing the ETA-9089 along with the documentary evidence for the ads.

If the Department of Labor approves your application, then your employer can move on to the next step of the green card.


The reason for the entire PERM recruitment process is to ensure that there is no advantage seek of the immigration so that cheap Labor doesn’t come in the U.S. to displace US workers.

If your employer can show that the recruitment process was in good faith, it should minimize issues.

PERM Disadvantages

However, certain things complicate this process. The first is supervised recruitment.

  • This is when certifying offices of the DOL closely scrutinize each step of the recruitment process, thus slowing down the processing time. A draft of each ad must be submitted to the officer before being placed.
  • The second way it could be slowed down is if your employer is chosen for an audit, it is of two types that the DOL conducts: random and targeted.

The National Interest Waiver

The National Interest Waiver (NIW) and PERM are almost similar in the aspect of obtaining a green card in the U.S. However, there is where all similarities end.

The NIW is an aspect created to respond to the PERM and is something to look at positively rather than thinking of it as an obstacle.

For people applying for an EB-2 visa, NIW is a way to bypass not only require a job and employer but also to waive the perm requirement.


This is because many EB-2 applicants are self-employed and thus can’t go through the recruitment process.

To use the NIW to bypass the PERM requirement, you will need to prove to the USCIS is that your endeavor in the US is in the national interest and that waiving this requirement would also be in the national interest.


So, to conclude NIW is a way to skirt around PERM Labor Certification.


There are many ways possible to make your case stronger by submitting items in your evidence. However, the best way possible is to have enough evidence to make a solid case for your NIW, it’s best to consult our immigration specialists who can help you compile your documents and address issues that might come.

Expert Opinion Letter

This addresses academic and employment experience qualification and states that the petitioner has a bachelor’s degree or higher in a specific specialty, a requirement for entry into the field.

What’s needed

  • Academic and work-related documents in English and notarized.
  • Detailed resume specifying jobs held, name of companies, job duties.
  • Supporting documents/letters from previous employers specifying periods of employment, job titles, and duties.

So don’t fuss if you are confused in NIW or PERM, we have it both covered with our specialists and experts who have been in this field for a long time.

So go for it. Trust International Evaluations for further queries.

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David Spangler

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