Services for International Employees & Scholars

Special Handling Labor Certification


The Special Handling Labor Certification for teaching positions by the U.S. Department of Labor is a determination that the candidate hired is the most qualified person for the position. This is the first step of three in an employment-based permanent residency process. The following criteria are the foundation of a special handling labor certification petition:

  • The position is full-time
  • Teaching must be a formal component of the job
  • The position must be either tenure-track or indefinitely renewable
  • A printed ad must have been placed in a nationally circulated professional publication
  • The position must be the same as the one originally advertised

The Labor Certification process must be started with IP within 15 months of the date of the Provost's offer letter.  





Provost Offer Letter

The timeline for the Special Handling Labor Certification begins from the date that the Provost signs the offer letter for the new employee

Initiates the 18 month time window for submission

Department Data

The hiring department at KU completes the Special Handling Labor Cert Departmental Intake Form and submits it along with all of the necessary documentation listed to IP


Employee Data

The international employee  completes the Labor Certification Employee Intake Form and submits all of the necessary documentation to IP


Prevailing Wage Request

IP submits a prevailing wage request to the Department of Labor (DOL) and waits for DOL to provide a prevailing wage determination (PWD)

6-8 weeks

Posting Notices

Upon receipt of a Prevailing Wage Determination from DOL IP will provide the department with Posting Notices that must be placed in 2 conspicuous business locations

10 business days

Mandatory Wait

Following the posting notices, IP must comply with a mandatory 30 day waiting period prior to submitting the Labor Certification to DOL

30 days

Absolute Filing Deadline with DOL

IP submits the Labor Certification to DOL for a decision

Submission must occur within18 months from the date the Provost signed the offer letter

DOL Decision Timeframe

DOL processes the Labor Certification application.

4-6 months

* Note: In some cases, the timeline will be considerably shorter than 15 months, depending on length of time the international employee has been in the U.S. in H-1B status. Contacting IP as early as possible is highly recommended.


International Calendar

Founded in 1964 as part of a Ford Foundation campus internationalization grant
One of the first 12 intensive English programs in the United States
Each semester, the AEC enrolls about 250 students representing more than 35 countries on six continents
The Applied English Center offers field trips and conversation groups to our students
One of 34 U.S. public institutions in the prestigious Association of American Universities
44 nationally ranked graduate programs.
—U.S. News & World Report
Top 50 nationwide for size of library collection.
5th nationwide for service to veterans —"Best for Vets: Colleges," Military Times