Timeline for H-2B Employment
I. Obtain Prevailing Wage Determination (at least 60 calendar days before needed)
The employer must file a prevailing wage request on ETA Form 9141 with the National Prevailing Wage Center (“NPWC”).
Using a date of need of October 1, the employer would need to submit the ETA Form 9141 by April 4 (for 90 days) and May 4 (for 60 days).
II. Application and Job Order Filing (file 90 – 75 calendar days before needed)
After receiving the PWD, the employer must place a job order with the State Workforce Agency (SWA) serving the area of intended employment while simultaneously filing the ETA Form 9142B and Appendix with the DOL no earlier than 90 days before the employment need and no later than 75 days before employment need. The SWA will have 6 business days to report any deficiencies of the job order to the DOL.
Using a date of need of October 1, the employer could submit the ETA Form 9142B as early as July 3 and as late as July 18 and avoid needing to file the request as an emergency. Employers that show good and substantial cause may file the H-2B registration (when required), application, and job order fewer than 75 days before the date of employment need if sufficient time to test the labor market and make a final determination exists.
III. Notice of Acceptance or Notice of Deficiency (seven (7) business days after filing)
The DOL will issue a Notice of Deficiency (NOD) to the employer within seven (7) business days of receiving the iCERT filed ETA Form 9142B.
Notice of Deficiency – employer completes/rectifies deficiencies
Notice of Acceptance – employer completes provided instructions
IV.Conduct Required Recruitment outlined in Notice of Acceptance within 14 calendar days of the date of issuance
The employer must conduct the recruitment described on the Notice of Acceptance within 14 calendar days from the date of issuance.
V. Recruitment Report and Extended Referral Period
The employer is required to accept referrals and hire qualified U.S. workers until 21 days before the date of employment need. The DOL will determine whether to certify or deny the application and issue the final determination after it receives the initial recruitment report by the date specified in the Notice of Acceptance. It is the employer’s obligation to continue to update the recruitment report and prepare a final recruitment report for retention.
VI. NPC Certifies the H-2B Application
After receiving the original certified ETA Form 9142B, the employer must complete the footer on the original Appendix B, keep the original Appendix B, and submit a signed copy of Appendix B with the original ETA Form 9142B directly to the appropriate Service Center of the of the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (“USCIS”) with the I-129.
VII. I-129 Petition with USCIS (one (1) to three (3) months regular processing, or 15 calendar days with premium processing)
Employers may file Form I-129 with a certified ETA Form 9142B for employment needs on or after October 1 for the following fiscal year cap.
VIII. Visa Application for Overseas Employees
A visa application process may take two (2) to three (3) weeks (or more) to complete. H-2B nonimmigrants may not be admitted to the U.S. until ten (10) days before date of employment need.