January 30, 2007
Nearly a year ago, the Department of Labor proposed a set of rules that would disallow the substitution of beneficiaries on labor certifications, and impose a 45-day deadline for employers to file an I-140 petition based on an approved labor certification. Currently, a labor certification may be utilized by an employee other than the employee for whom the application was filed and approved for, and an approved labor certification remains valid indefinitely. The proposed rule would also prohibit the sale, barter or purchase of labor certification applications, and prohibit payment by an employee for any expenses associated with the labor certification process.
On January 26, 2007, the proposed rules were forwarded to the federal Office of Management and Budget (OMB). At this point, it is not known what changes, if any, were made to the proposed rules. It is possible that DOL may have amended its proposed rules after receiving public feedback on the original set of proposed rules. OMB review is required before an agency's rule can be implemented. Once OMB completes its review, which can be done in 30 to 90 days, the rule, if passed, will be published in the Federal Register and could take effect soon thereafter.