DOL News Release Further Emphasizes Focus on Compliance and Enforcement Efforts03 Jul 2017
The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) issued a news release on June 6, 2017, which details actions the agency is taking to combat entities committing visa fraud and abuse. The news release quotes Secretary of Labor Alexander Acosta, who states, “Entities who engage in visa program fraud and abuse are breaking our laws and are harming American workers. … We will enforce vigorously those laws, including heightened use of criminal referrals.” Perhaps most importantly, this news release helps to reemphasize that any U.S. company that employs foreign national workers must ensure that it remains in full compliance with U.S. laws.
Directives for Various DOL Departments
The news release details how enforcement efforts are becoming more vigorous. In addition to a continued push to increase coordination with the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS), various entities within the DOL are expected to “… coordinate the administration and enforcement activities of the visa programs and make referrals of criminal fraud to the Office of the Inspector General.” The news release further notes that the Employment and Training Administration (ETA) of the DOL has been instructed to propose modifications to the labor condition application (LCA) and to internal investigatory forms “to better identify systematic violations and potential fraud, and provide greater transparency… .”
By now, it is abundantly clear that the Trump Administration is focusing almost entirely on compliance and enforcement when it comes to employment-based immigration processes. This does not prevent U.S. companies from utilizing foreign national workers; however, it does provide employers with ample warning that they must be diligent in their efforts to follow the letter of the law.
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