Bridging Borders: A Small Business Guide to Sponsoring Green Cards


Finding qualified employees is often a challenge for many small businesses, especially in highly specialized fields. One potential solution is to hire foreign workers looking for green card sponsorship. However, many small business owners are under the impression that they can’t sponsor employees for a green card. In this blog post, we aim to debunk this misconception by explaining the process of sponsoring an employee for a green card.

Understanding the Sponsorship Process

The process of green card sponsorship is simpler than most people think. The first step involves obtaining certification from the Department of Labor that confirms your need to hire foreign employees. This begins by filing a prevailing wage determination with the Department of Labor, which specifies the prevailing wage for the role. This process can take a few months.

Following this, you begin the recruitment process. This involves advertising the role in various channels, including newspapers and online platforms, ensuring a fair recruitment process and preventing any potential unlawful activities. After the recruitment process concludes, you wait for 30 days and then file the online application, also known as the PERM labor certification.

Once approved, the Department of Labor issues a certification allowing you to proceed to the next step, the immigrant petition (Form I-140), within six months. This form collects information about your company, financials, the position, and the background of the employee.

Choosing the Right Category for Your Employee

The category under which you file the immigrant petition depends on your company’s requirements for the position offered. For instance, requiring advanced degrees or considerable experience can be sponsored under the EB-2 category. Conversely, non-skilled, skilled positions and professionals can be sponsored under the EB-3 category.

The Importance of Proving the Ability to Pay Wages

An essential step for small businesses in this process is proving their capability to pay the proposed wages. This can be demonstrated through your tax returns, annual reports, audited financial statements, and U.S. federal corporate tax returns.

For H-1B employees, you can provide evidence that you are currently paying them. If you’re not paying the salary for the green card, you must prove that you can cover the difference between their present salary and the future proposed salary.

Challenges for Sole Proprietors

Sole proprietors face additional challenges in this process. They need to present evidence of their lease and business expenses, along with profit and loss statements to verify the business’s income.


Contrary to common belief, even small businesses like restaurants, construction companies, and real estate firms can successfully sponsor an employee’s green card. Success hinges on understanding the labor certification process, demonstrating financial capacity, and collaborating with an experienced immigration attorney. By doing so, you can attract the right talent and contribute to the growth and prosperity of your small business.

If you or your family members have any questions about how immigration and nationality laws in the United States may affect you, or if you want to access additional information about immigration and nationality laws in the United States or Canada, please don’t hesitate to contact the immigration and nationality lawyers at NPZ Law Group. You can reach us by emailing or by calling us at 201-670-0006 extension 104. We also invite you to visit our website at for more information.