DOL Provides Info on Cases More Likely to Trigger Audits

A portion of the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) audit plan for PERM labor certification (LC) cases was recently released. The plan describes tiers of cases that are more likely to be subjected to audits, and also points out some of the potential triggers that may lead to the selection of certain pending LCs for supervised recruitment. The DOL document was made public as the result of a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request.

Document Provides Outline – Short on Specifics

At the time of this writing, the DOL audits approximately 40 percent of all LC cases. Most of the cases audited are selected at random, not based on any particular criteria. The DOL document does provide some insight into potential factors that may increase the risk of an audit, such as the amount of experience and/or education required, or whether the sponsoring employer has recently had layoffs. Some of the information, however, is not complete. For instance, the document references an attachment that lists certain “[t]rade related occupations” more likely to trigger audits. That attachment, though, has not been released by the DOL. While the factors listed may increase the risk of audit, there still may be valid reasons for proceeding with a case. The individual circumstances of each case need to be considered.

All LC Filings Subject to Audit – A Strong Case is Key

No matter what information is included in an LC, there is a reasonable possibility that the case will be randomly selected for audit. But, an audit does not mean the LC is destined for denial. To the contrary, if the case was properly prepared, an audit may serve merely as an inconvenient delay before adjudication. The key is to prepare the best case possible for submission.

Supervised Recruitment Tier

The DOL document also included some general information on cases that are more likely to be selected for supervised recruitment. The focus here is on cases resubmitted by the employer within a year of either an LC being denied or the case being audited and then withdrawn. Cases that are not filed electronically also are more likely to be targeted.

Conclusion

Attorneys need to be aware of trends in DOL audits and recognize potential trigger points. They must be able to weigh those factors against the realities of employers’ business needs and specific situations. The Murthy Law Firm has an exceptional team of attorneys and legal professionals in our dedicated¬†Green Card Department, which is ready to help employers file strong LC cases.

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Disclaimer: The information provided here is of a general nature and may not apply to any specific or particular circumstance. It is not to be construed as legal advice nor presumed indefinitely up to date.