Employers Granted More Time to Confirm PERM Application
Program Electronic Review Management (PERM) is the process through which companies obtain labor certifications for their employees. Typically, the process of certifying and filing can take up to 2-3 months for un-audited cases or even up to 8 months for audited cases. With such daunting timelines, employers dread receiving a notice from the US Department of Labor (USDOL) that their PERM application has been denied due to a trivial mistake.
Here are some common pitfalls that companies should avoid when sponsoring foreign nationals.
Flawed Recruitment Efforts
Companies must advertise their position availability within the first 6 months before the labor certification is filed and then 30 days before the certification filing. Employers must advertise through the state workforce agency and in Sunday newspaper ads of the employer’s surrounding area. When companies fail to advertise in both ways, it can result in an application denial.
Inaccurate Job Descriptions
Employers must be careful that the job descriptions they put in the media do not require egregiously high job experience, knowledge, or skills designed to turn away those who are not sponsored foreign nationals. On the other end of the spectrum, employers must also be careful that skills that they are seeking are not tailored specifically to sponsored foreign nationals.
Employers must be able to show on their application that they will be paying their employee the prevailing wage for the position for which they are being hired and further, that they can afford the wage. This measure is intended to protect employees by ensuring they are adequately compensated for the job as well as ensuring that the wages in the job market remain competitive and healthy.
The application also looks at the employer’s recent layoffs. If the USDOL finds that the employer has recently laid off another employee, only to hire a sponsored foreign national immediately, this may draw suspicion that the company is merely exploiting foreign labor.
These requirements are enacted to ensure the safety of not only the sponsored nationals, but also the safety and competitiveness of the US job market.
While these requirements can be elusive and time consuming, recent changes by the USDOL may make this process go a little smoother. The USDOL has recently enacted legislation that has extended the deadline; employers are now required to confirm sponsorship of a PERM applicant in 30 days, rather than a mere 7 days.
What this now means is employers will have additional time to complete these applications, ensuring that all the information submitted on the application is correct, verified, and can stand up to the application process. This stands to benefit employers and their sponsored employees alike by eliminating common pitfalls and expediting this process to get workers working and companies running.
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