H-2B, Temporary Labor Certification for Non-Agriculture Workers | Flag.dol.gov Skip to main content

H-2B, Temporary Labor Certification for Non-Agriculture Workers

The H-2B temporary non-agricultural program permits U.S. employers to hire nonimmigrant workers to come to the U.S. and perform non-agricultural services or labor. Visit our data disclosure page to see all the different types of jobs that fall into the category of H-2B. Current regulations cap the amount of H-2B workers to 66,000 per year. For a detailed explanation of the program and instructions click here.

Program Process

Step 1: Determine Eligibility

To Participate in the H-2B program, an employer must be a bona fide U.S. employer with possession of a valid Federal Employer Identification Number (FEIN), physically located in the United States and needs to have the means to be contacted for employment

The employer's job opportunities must be:

  • Temporary (9 months or less, except one-time occurrences),
  • Full-time (35 or more hours per week), and 
  • Non-agricultural employment within a specified area(s) of intended employment.

With the exception of a one-time occurrence need which can last up to 3 years, temporary need will not be approved for longer than 9 months.

Step 2: Obtain a Prevailing Wage (Forms ETA-9141 and 9165)

  • Employer must request and obtain a prevailing wage determination (PWD) from the OFLC Nation Prevailing Wage Center (NPWC) before filing an H-2B application.
  • Employers are encouraged to file at least 60 days before the determination is needed.

Step 3: File an Application and Job Order with the Chicago National Processing Center (NPC)

Employers can choose to file either electronically or by mail. Below is a list of what to include:

  • H-2B Application for Temporary Employment certification (Form ETA-9142B) and appendices
  • A valid PWD tracking number issued by the NPWC
  • A copy of the job order submitted to the SWA
  • Copies of all contracts and agreements with the employer demonstrating the authority to represent the employer (agents and/or recruiters)
  • Contact information for all persons and entities hired by or working for recruiters or agents including any subagents or employees of such person and entities (as applicable)
  • Migrant and Seasonal Agricultural Worker Protection Act (MSPA) Farm Labor Contractor Certificate of Registration (agents, as applicable)
  • Any applicable supporting documentation

Step 4: Conduct Recruitment of U.S. Workers

Within 14 days of receipt of a Notice of Acceptance, the employer must follow the instructions provided in the Notice of Acceptance and conduct recruitment, including:

  • Placing newspaper advertisements,
  • Contacting former U.S. workers,
  • Contacting the bargaining representative (if any) or posting notice of the job opportunity to the employer's current employees, and
  • Conducting any additional recruitment, if directed by the Certifying Officer.