Update on PERM Labor Certification Program: Audits on Rise; Wage Determinations “Current”

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PERM audits are on the rise again, and employers sponsoring foreign workers need to take care that they are strictly complying with the requirements of the PERM labor certification program. Job requirements, advertising, and recruitment are the key areas for PERM audits. In this time of high unemployment, recruitment is an area that is especially vulnerable to an audit. Because vetting applicants and managing applicant response is one particular part of the process for which employers are solely responsible, employers must maintain good records of their recruitment efforts and applicant pool. While they must document who applied and how they were notified about the selection process, employers are not, however, required to tell applicants why they weren’t hired even though some audit notices ask for this information. Supervised recruitment – which can cost an employer additional money for advertising and legal fees – also is on the rise, especially in professional occupations where the requirements include configurations that offer alternatives to bachelor degrees, where the job is entry level with no requirements, in lower level financial industry jobs, and in restaurant industry positions irrespective of the status of the foreign national.

Meanwhile, the Department of Labor announced that is has cleared up its backlog and is again issuing prevailing wage determinations for PERM cases within 60 days of submission.

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