BALCA upholds denial of Labor Certification – Alien Worker did not meet the Employer’s Minimum Job Requirements

The Board of Alien Labor Certification Appeals (BALCA) recently affirmed the final determination of a Certifying Officer (CO) denying labor certification for an alien worker for the position of “Supervisor.”

The employer filed an application for labor certification which was accepted for processing on February 8, 2006. ETA Form 9089 indicated a requirement of thirty-two (32) months of experience in the job offered, and six (6) months of training as a certified welder. The CO issued an Audit Notification letter requesting evidence of recruitment and other required documentation and the employer complied. Thereafter the CO denied certification because the foreign worker did not meet the Employer’s minimum education, training and experience requirements, in violation of 20 C.F.R. §656.17(i). Specifically, the application required 6 months of training as a certified welder and the application did not show that the Alien had this training. The Employer responded by requesting reconsideration stating that the Alien had a total of 13 years of experience in construction work and gave specific dates of employment with other companies. The CO again denied certification on the same basis. The employer submitted another request for reconsideration stating that the Alien was the ONLY applicant to respond to recruitment and met every requirement of the posting including that of a certified welder. The CO issued a letter of reconsideration indicating that denial was proper because the Alien did not meet the minimum requirements and no further evidence was provided to support the employer’s claim that the Alien in fact had the 6 months of required training as a certified welder.

PERM Regulation 20 C.F.R. § 656.17(i)(1) controls and it provides that, “the job requirements, as described, must represent the employer’s actual minimum requirements for the job opportunity.”

In the instant case, Section H-4 of ETA Form 9089, required 6 months of training as a certified welder, but the employer failed to include in the foreign worker’s work experience job details that he received training in, or performed, any welding. Further, the employer failed to submit any evidence to support its claim that the beneficiary did in fact possess the welding experience required.

Accordingly, the Board affirmed the decision of the CO in denying labor certification.

Matter of Virginia Carolina Construction