The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) recently released additional information about its new “Program Integrity Review” in its PERM program. In the November 2011 DOL Office of Inspector General (OIG) report, the DOL indicated that it was piloting a “risk management model” in the PERM program. Under the integrity review process, the DOL has indicated that it is shifting its focus to increasing audits and Supervised Recruitment in the PERM program. The DOL indicated that it has set a goal of 30% which constitutes (approximately 20,000 PERM applications each year) of the PERM applications will be subjected to an Integrity Check through either an audit and/or Supervised Recruitment . The DOL also indicated that the program integrity review commenced in October 2011. This is one of the principal reasons why employers (in particular consulting companies) are encountering a significant increase in the number of audits and Supervised Recruitment requests received within the past six months. This trend will most likely increase in the future as the DOL continues to shift additional resources to its program integrity review. It is also assumed that the number of denials will also significantly increase in the PERM program because currently approximately 55% of the audited PERM cases are denied and only approximately 20% of the applications which are subjected to Supervised Recruitment are ultimately approved.
Additional information about the DOL’s Integrity Review process in the PERM program will be contained in our firm’s future Immigration Updates when it becomes available.