Reasons for Delays in Labor Certification (PERM) processing at the Dept of Labor

Labor Certification Overview

Many people have inquired about why the labor certification priority dates stopped moving in the last 8 months, starting in June 2008. While most people worried that the delays were caused by the growing unemployment rate, the global recession, or because of recent layoffs, we now know the reasons for the long processing times at Dept. of Labor.

Earlier this month on February 3, 2009, Department of Labor confirmed to AILA that one of the reasons for the delay was because there was a dispute over the contractors to be hired at the Atlanta Processing Center who would be the people to work on the PERM processing! Apparently, last summer, DOL had chosen to award a contract to hire and train contractor staff for the Atlanta National Processing Center. After the contract was awarded, a dispute started with DOL over who the appropriate contract should have been awarded. This issue was not resolved until September 2008, at which time, the new workers had to be trained and only then did we start to see processing time pick up.

The Department of Labor reported that only 4,551 PERM applications were completed in October through December 2008, but 3,500 PERM applications were completed in January 2009! So if you are the recipient of a freshly certified labor certificate and looking to file your I-140 and adjustment of status package, call Fong & Aquino for a consultation without delay!

Although this reason for the delay in processing times was not related to an increase in audits or problems with PERM processing in general, the DOL did note, that they were very concerned with the rising unemployment rate. Anyone thinking of filing a PERM labor certification in today's current economic climate must carefully consider how the local job market will affect effective advertising, good faith recruitment, and ultimately the success of the labor certification. If you and your employer are thinking of filing a PERM labor certification, you should employ the services of a qualified and competent attorney who will give your case individualized attention. The attorneys at Fong & Aquino never use a cookie-cutter approach when we navigate the intricacies of the PERM labor certification process, regardless of whether your PERM is a based on an entry-level position, one requiring exceptional ability, or advanced EB-2 Master’s degree or EB-2 Bachelor’s + 5 years of experience case. It is the extra care and accessibility that the attorneys at Fong & Aquino give to each case that has achieved the successful results which our clients enjoy. For an assessment of any potential PERM labor certification case, please fill out an online consultation form.

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