Current PERM Processing Time 2020 – PWD, Audit Case

Updated  12 Feb, 20

Fastest PERM processing time is 45 days. Average PERM processing time is 3 months. PWD approval is taking 3 months.

Permanent Labor Certification auditing is done for 30% of cases by requesting job advertisement and employer documents. US department of labor (DOL) also conducts supervised recruitment to find fraud. Audit cases are taking 6 months for approval.

PERM Processing Time12 Feb

Fastest PERM ApprovalA-19212-37886
6 month 16 days
Time Taken
30 Sep, 19
Approval Date
31 Jul, 19
Receipt Date

Fastest PWD
3 month 24 days
Receipt:14 Oct, 19
Fastest PERM Audit
7 month 29 days
Receipt:19 Jun, 19
Fastest PERM Reconsider
4 month 26 days
Receipt:15 Sep, 19

Total Max Out Time
Job Ads + PWD + PERM + i140
Fastest - premium i1401 year 1 month
Job Ads

Average - regular i1401 year 3 month
Job Ads

Check PERM Status Online
Please write correct digits from your receipt number.

Status Date
Expect Approval On or Before DateBETA

PERM Checker
Your PERM case compared with others around you

PERM Approvals
Pending  Approved  RFE,   Denied  Your case  Verified Status 

PERM is first step in US green card process. PWD and PERM approval are required for H1B (EB2, EB3) and L work visas applicants based on their ETA Form 9089 filing with DOL.

USCIS does not process PERM.

Check PERM Case Status Online

PERM Checker: Use your PERM ETA case number to check your PERM approval status online above. The PERM case number starts with the letter ‘A’ which means your case is at PERM processing center in Atlanta.

The A number has the year and day of the year embedded in it. The number is assigned to your PERM case when your employer or attorney creates the case in online DOL system for the first time. Your employer may or may not submit the case on same day to DOl for approval.

PERM Analyst review means that your case is worked on by DOL Analyst.

ETA Case Number format is A-NNNNN-NNNNN with 10 digits and the Alien number (also called A number) under beneficiary section on I-140 Approval Notice is A-NNN-NNN-NNN with 9 digits. Note that both numbers are different and have different purpose.

PERM Application Status Meaning


PERM certified status means it has been approved and is valid for 180 days from the date of approval.


PERM certified expired means that PERM was approved but was not used within 6 months to file i140 with USCIS.

This PERM has expired and a new PERM should be filed to get a new Green card priority date. It is possible to request the same priority date from old expired PERM but USCIS may or may not port the date. It depends on USCIS discretion.

Many people have also reported that their i140 was approved after PERM but the status still shows as ‘Certified Expired’ on DOL website and in above case status check. There is no need to worry as it is possible that DOL database is not updated and is showing wrong information.


PERM application was withdrawn by employer.


PERM application was denied by DOL.

PERM Green Card Priority Date

Your US Green card priority date is the date when you file your PERM application with DOL and not the date when the case was created online.

#1 Employment Based

If your GC needs PERM labor certification, the priority date is the date on which the DOL receives ETA Form 9089 (PERM application form).

If your GC does not need labor certification like EB1 and NIW cases, the priority date is the date of filing form I-140, I-526 or I-360.

#2 Family Based Green Cards

The GC priority date is the date U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) receives the Form I-130 petition.

H1B 7th year extension with pending PERM

How long does PERM approval process can take in not in your hand but you can file H1B 7th year extension (after completing 6 year quota) if your PERM has been pending for more than 365 days including audit time.

Experience letter for PERM – Skill Letter

Use PERM experience letter sample to get skills listed on old employer’s letter head as an employment verification. This may be needed to prove your skills for the job description that is relevant for your PERM application, if your case is selected for PERM Auditing. The letter also explains how to write job description for PERM.

Normally, 30% of PERM applications are selected randomly for Audit.

PERM in H1B 6th year – Can H1B be extended?

You cannot apply for H1B 7th year extension unless your PERM gets approved before your 6th year ends if you apply PERM during 6th year. PERM has to be either approved or pending (waiting) for more than 365 days on the last day of H1B 6th year.

As a solution to this problem, attorney’s suggest to re-capture vacation time spent outside USA and extend your 6th year end date.

PERM Premium Processing

There is no premium processing available for PERM application. i140 application has premium and can be used to speed up filing 7th year H1B extension if you are near your max out time.

PERM Approval Delayed

Your employer can contact DOL Helpdesk for a status on the application at You cannot call DOL for your PERM status check.

USA USCIS Processing Time

Recent discussion on forum

  1. pravin.nerkar

    My PERM application was filed on Sep 21st 2019 . Its almost 4 months ( 120 days ) since its submitted to Atlanta processing center . I checked the status with my employer . its showing “Analyst review” since last 2 weeks .

    How long would it take to final decision . My max out is coming very close ( in Feb 2020)

    If I have to go back to India , how many days I have to keep behind before my max out date .


  2. mkvmishra

    Thanks Anil for your answer. I really love this forum.

  3. vandu15

    Hi Pravin

    Any Change in your Perm Approval Status?

  4. pravin.nerkar

    No . it’s same status . No change in the status.

    • Pravin

  5. dhananjaybhandari

    Hi @Anil.Gupta,

    My employer has filed my PERM and it’s been 70 days almost. I do have file number. When I check on your site with that number it shows me ‘Pending’. Any idea how much more time would it take to get decision ? And also how much time after that would it take to get my I-140 approved if I do it in premium? I have my H1B visa valid till Nov 2020 so getting lil worried. Please help with this.

    Thank you !

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13 more replies

  189 Useful Questions & Answers

  1. Subhash
    Subhash 28 Feb, 19 at 2:06 pm

    Hi Anil,

    My PERM case has been certified and waiting for approval copy. my i 797 is expiring on 10th Apr but I-94 is valid till 20th Apr. I will be filling I-140 and will have to wait for approval. My question to you is are we supposed to file extension before I-797 expiry date or I-94 date? Can you please confirm.


    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 28 Feb, 19 at 4:41 pm

      You can file H1b extension before i94 expiry date and you should be good.

      • Kumar
        Kumar 28 Feb, 19 at 5:34 pm

        I was in same situation and my attorney told I 797 date is the date that governs H1B visa. Which means he has to file H1B by 10th April.

        • Anil Gupta
          Anil Gupta 28 Feb, 19 at 6:35 pm

          Thanks for sharing. I appreciate it.

  2. Perm Status
    Perm Status 28 Feb, 19 at 8:11 am

    In icert portal, if the PERM Case number is mentioned as Approved / Certified. Then, we can proceed for I-140 Filing correct.

    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 28 Feb, 19 at 10:59 am

      Your employer will receive the official confirmation from DOL and a copy of approval. You need this PERM approval copy to file i140 application.

  3. MC Sher
    MC Sher 26 Feb, 19 at 7:28 am

    Hi Anil,

    My company will file H1b extension with level 1 wage. If we get an RFE, can the company readjust to level 2 if they agree to?

    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 26 Feb, 19 at 9:37 am

      Who is ‘they’ here? USCIS or your company?

      You cannot change the level of wage later as per my information just to please USCIS. It is better you file with wage level 2 if that’s the plan to improve your chances of approval.

  4. Manoj Garikina
    Manoj Garikina 24 Feb, 19 at 12:01 pm

    Hi Anil,

    My H1b will be maxing out in Jun 2019, After couple of PWD re-determinations, finally i got PWD this week.
    Attorney says they will take another 2 months to file the PERM. What are options now?

    Should i go back to India immediately after PERM filing ?
    how many days before should i leave?
    If i go back to India, how long can i stay in India before coming back to USA?
    What happens if PERM and I140 approval takes more than year?

    Thank you for helping!!

    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 24 Feb, 19 at 2:03 pm

      It is recommended to leave 60 days in your H1B max out time to avoid issues later.

      You can currently recapture your vacation time spent outside USA to push your H1B max date.

      You can stay in India as long as you want. It is your choice.

      You can come back to US once your H1 extension is approved.
      You can file
      H1B one year extention with PERM pending
      H1B three year extention with i140 approved

      • Manoj Garikina
        Manoj Garikina 24 Feb, 19 at 8:21 pm

        Thank you Anil,

        Say if my PERM is filed on April 1st 2019 and i move out of USA on May 1st(Maxout Jun 30th including all vacations).
        I will be eligible to apply for 7th year extension on April 2nd 2020.

        Do we need to file for the extension after April 2nd 2020 or can we file for extension in Jan 2020 (since the extensions process are taking 3 -4 months)?

        Also do my Job Titles in PERM and H1B extension application needs to be same?

        • Anil Gupta
          Anil Gupta 24 Feb, 19 at 8:37 pm

          You can file H1B extension on or after April 2, 2020 with pending PERM (if any).
          PERM is for future job and the job title can be different for H1B.

  5. Sadhana
    Sadhana 22 Feb, 19 at 9:20 am

    Hi Anil, Appreciate all your good work!
    My H1B is expiring in September 2019 and my company has just started my PERM process. My 6 years expires in January 2020. Meanwhile my company is suggesting I do a COS with H4 EAD (spouse has approved I140) and then convert back to H1 (apply CAP exempt) when PERM is approved. I understand H4 EAD is at risk and that’s fine as long as I will be able to convert back to H1 after PERM approval. Is this possible? Can my company initiate a CAP exempt H1 after PERM approval?

    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 22 Feb, 19 at 5:11 pm

      Your company can file a cap exempt H1B anytime for your case including after PERM approval.

  6. Swati sinha
    Swati sinha 20 Feb, 19 at 6:44 pm

    Hi Anil, Can PERM will be reject due to disease like diabetics,thyroid or any other?

    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 20 Feb, 19 at 7:34 pm

      I am not aware of any such rule. Did you submit any medical report with your PERM application?
      I have never heard of it before.

      Medical checkups are done only when you are filing for i485 Green card application.

      • Swati sinha
        Swati sinha 20 Feb, 19 at 7:57 pm

        No, waiting for approval.just want to check.

  7. EvanIcicle
    EvanIcicle 19 Feb, 19 at 2:42 pm

    Hello Anil,

    My perm was file around Sept 2017, then the attorney told me the case was denied in January 2018. She told me something was wrong and the case should not be denied. and she sent my case for appeal. we didn’t hear anything since. the attorney told me it needs 24-36 months to have the case reviewed. When I ask her for my case number, the attorney said she couldn’t give me since my employer said I should not have it. What you think I should do? Thank you!

    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 19 Feb, 19 at 3:33 pm

      Sorry to hear about it.
      The only way is to talk to your employer and ask about currrent status of your PERM.

      There is no other way to find out the status.

      • EvanIcicle
        EvanIcicle 19 Feb, 19 at 8:36 pm

        Do you think I can ask Department of Labor about my case number or my employer is legal to not let me know the case number?
        Thank you for your reply!

        • Anil Gupta
          Anil Gupta 19 Feb, 19 at 8:53 pm

          DOL does not share information with employees. Only employers and their attorneys have access to ask case status or case numbers.

          • EvanIcicle
            EvanIcicle 19 Feb, 19 at 8:59 pm

            Thank you for those information!

  8. V11
    V11 19 Feb, 19 at 10:06 am

    Hi Anil,

    I have a question on H1B extension.

    1. Started working with employer A, who sponsored my H1B, which was valid from Jan 26, 2016 to Jan 25, 2018. I left this job on Mar 15, 2017, which means that I had approximately 10 months left of unused time on this H1B.

    2. I started working with employer B on Apr 3, 2017. Employer B sponsored a new H1B which is valid between Apr 3, 2017 and Apr 2, 2020.

    We’re in the green card process currently and are worried we might not have enough time to process PERM. With that said, if we were to file H1B time recapture / extension request, will we be able to recapture that 10 months mentioned above, in addition to any vacation time outside of the US?

    Many thanks in advance for your reply, it’s always appreciated.

    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 19 Feb, 19 at 12:59 pm

      If you were OUTSIDE USA in those 10 months, then you can recapture those 10 months.
      Only time spent outside USA is eligible for recapturing.

  9. Harish
    Harish 18 Feb, 19 at 2:02 pm

    Hi Anil,
    Thanks for effort and all the valuable information. Your responses gives us hope and confidence. Thanks and appreciate the good work.


    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 18 Feb, 19 at 7:48 pm

      You are welcome. Do share the website with your friends if you think it is useful.

  10. PermChecker
    PermChecker 16 Feb, 19 at 10:22 am

    Hi Anil,

    My PERM was filed Nov 15 2018. H1-B max out is Dec 2019, but currently have visa till June end.
    Once I get my perm and 140 approved (say by March end or April mid), can a new employer file my visa transfer + extension?
    Or will I have to file visa extension with current employer and then have the new employer file xfer?

    • Anil Gupta
      Anil Gupta 16 Feb, 19 at 10:33 am

      I strongly suggest to stay and work with your current employer for at-least 180 days after i140 approval to make i140 irrevocable.

      You can legally file H1B transfer with approved i140 before 180 days but it is highly risky and may get rejected if old employer withdraws your i140 after you leave.

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