The PERM labor certification process was created to ensure that U.S workers will not be displaced by the sponsored foreign worker. This is done by testing the labor market to show that there are no “able, willing, qualified, and available” U.S. workers to fill the offered position. As previously discussed in the article What are the Mandatory PERM Recruitment Efforts?, a sponsoring employer must conduct good faith recruitment within the bounds of the regulations set forth by the Department of Labor.
The recruitment process for professional occupations is regulated by 20 CFR 656.17(e)(1). This regulation further states that “the mandatory requirement steps must be conducted at least 30 days, but no more than 180 days, before the filing of the application.” In simple terms, once the mandatory requirement steps have been completed, the sponsoring employer must wait 30 days before filing the PERM application. This is commonly referred to as the “quiet period.”
For a professional occupation, DOL requires that three additional forms of recruitment must be completed. Please note, one of these additional recruitment efforts may take place within 30 days of filing the PERM application.
While some like to call this 30 day period between the completion of most of the recruitment efforts and the actual filing of the application a “quiet period,” this time period is actually still part of the recruitment process. This window of time has been put into place to allow possible U.S. workers additional time to respond to the advertisements. During this “quiet period,” the sponsoring employer must continue to review and promptly respond to any of the applications received due to the recruitment process.
If the recruitment efforts have not yielded any “able, willing, qualified, and available” U.S. workers after testing the labor market, once the mandatory 30 day period has passed, the PERM labor certification can be filed with the Department of Labor.
As a PERM labor certification that has been filed before the 30 day waiting period has lapsed will likely result in a denial, it is very important to follow the timeline accurately. Speaking to an experienced attorney will ensure the PERM application is timely filed and a review of the applications received from the recruitment efforts is done properly, following DOL guidelines and requirements.
By: Jessica Palarca
Jessica Palarca is an attorney in Reddy & Neumann’s PERM Labor Certification Department where she assists clients in the beginning stages of the green card process.