The Labor Department will not extend certain flexible deadlines it provided to employers because of the COVID-19 pandemic, according to an FAQ issued by the Office of Foreign Labor Certification (OFLC) Thursday.

Key points:

  • Employers must respond to Labor Department requests for information and documents by the deadline on the notice. Under the temporary measures, which have now expired, employers had until May 12, 2020 to respond to requests whose original deadlines fell between March 13, 2020 and May 12, 2020.
  • Employers must now follow normal timelines for recruitment and filing of PERM applications, i.e., recruitment must occur within the 30-to-180-day window before the filing date of the PERM application. Under the now expired temporary measures, employers were given an additional 60 days to post the Notice of Filing if recruitment began on or after Sept. 15, 2019 and the PERM application was filed by May 12, 2020.
  • The OFLC will continue to accept requests to extend response deadlines for discretionary deadlines, such as audit notifications.  The agency will decide them on a case-by-case basis. Requests must clearly explain why the extension is necessary and must be made by the original deadline.

Background: The new FAQ rescinds Question #3 of the first COVID-19 bulletin that was issued March 20.

BAL Analysis: Employers in the PERM process should be aware that the Labor Department has not extended the above deadlines and that PERM applications will be denied if the recruitment was delayed beyond the temporary timelines. Employers may continue to seek an extension of response deadlines for audit notifications and other discretionary deadlines, though they will have to demonstrate a clear need and the granting of an extension is not assured.

This alert has been provided by the BAL U.S. Practice group. For additional information, please contact

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