H-2A Certification Frequently Asked Questions

The H-2A labor certification program establishes a means for agricultural employers who anticipate a shortage of domestic workers to bring nonimmigrant foreign workers to the U.S. to perform agricultural labor or services of a temporary or seasonal nature.

Valid Length of the H-2A Labor Certification

The H-2A labor certification application shall be valid for the period of employment indicated on the Form ETA 790; however, in no event shall the validity period exceed more than a year. As temporary or seasonal agricultural employment, the work is performed at certain seasons of the year or for a limited time period of less than one year when the employer can show that the need for the foreign worker is truly temporary.

Temporary Need for H-2A Temporary Labor Certification

The employer's need for a worker must be of a seasonal or other temporary basis. A seasonal basis is the kind exclusively performed at certain seasons or periods of the year and which, from its nature, may not be continuous or carried on throughout the year. A temporary basis is for a limited time only or is contemplated for a particular piece of work, usually of a short duration.

Required Time Frame for Filing an H-2A Temporary Labor Certification Application

Employers are advised to file requests for H-2A certifications at least 45 days before certification is needed, but no more than 60 days before certification is needed. An ETA Form 790 should be submitted to the H-2A Program Manager listed below.

  • Agricultural and Food Processing Clearance Order - ETA Form 790
  • Application for Temporary Employment Certification - ETA Form 9142
  • Agricultural Program Only - ETA Form 9142 Appendix A2

These forms may be found at: https://www.foreignlaborcert.doleta.gov/form.cfm

How to file and additional information can be found at: http://www.foreignlaborcert.doleta.gov/faqsanswers.cfm#filing

The Workforce Services Division is the state agency that administers the ALC Program in Montana. Funding, oversight, and processing is provided by the U.S. Department of Labor Employment and Training Administration.

Contact Information

Kathleen Johnson, Program Manager
Workforce Services Division
PO Box 1728
Helena, MT 59624-1728
Phone: (406) 444-2981
Email: Kathyjohnson@mt.gov