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BALCA Determines that State Workforce Agency “Matches” are not Applicants for the PER

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The Board of Alien Labor Certification Appeals (“BALCA”) recently considered whether candidates that a state workforce agency matched to an open position must be considered applicants for purposes of preparing a recruitment report as part of the PERM process. In Matter of Lakha Enterprises, Inc., the employer submitted a labor certification case for the position of “Cook.” The case was selected for supervised recruitment. The employer submitted documentation that a job order was placed with the Illinois State Workforce Agency (“ISWA”) and that the number of matches was 0 and the number of recruiting outcomes was 20. In preparing the recruitment report, the employer did not list the candidates who were listed by the ISWA as part of the recruiting outcome because these candidates did not affirmatively apply for the job. Rather, these candidates only “inquired about the job posting by viewing it, and did not actually apply for the job.” The Department of Labor denied the case on the basis that these 20 candidates were not listed in the recruitment report. In reviewing the case, BALCA considered the DOL’s FAQ’s which state that an “employer is responsible for considering / contacting those applicants who have affirmatively provided a response as specified by the employer in the job order.” BALCA found that the job order in this case instructed applicants to apply through submitting a resume to the employer. However, none of the 20 candidates submitted a resume. Thus, they did not affirmatively apply for the position. BALCA reversed the denial on the basis that these 20 individuals were not actually candidates for the position because they did not affirmatively apply for it. This case establishes that individuals who are matched to an employer who has submitted a job order as part of the PERM recruitment process will not be considered applicants unless they actually apply for the posted position. This post originally appeared on HLG's Views blog by Cadence Moore. http://www.hammondlawgroup.com/blog/

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