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BALCA Case Summary: Matter of Karl Storz Endoscopy-America – Definition of Recruitment Period

Posted by attorney Marc Taylor

This BALCA decision underscores the importance of understanding the definition of and monitoring the 180 day PERM recruitment period.


The SWA PWD (Prevailing Wage Determination) was valid from September 11, 2008 to January 1, 2009.

The Employer placed a job order with the SWA (State Workforce Agency) and placed an advertisement with a job search website on September 5, 2008 (before the PWD was issued).

The Employer filed its application for Permanent Employment Certification (ETA Form 9089) on February 11, 2009 (after the PWD expired).

BALCA Discussion:

Employers are required to file their applications or commence the required recruitment within the validity period specified by the PWD.

“The first recruitment step, whatever step that may be, initiates the recruitment process. An employer can only begin recruitment once. Accordingly, “begin the recruitment" means that an employer begins the recruitment process by conducting its first recruitment step."

For the purposes of Section 656.17(e), “the ‘recruitment period’ . . . refers to the six months prior to filing an application," during which all of an employer’s recruitment must be conducted."

The term “begin the recruitment" in 20 CFR 656.40(c) refers to the commencement of the first recruitment step, not to the commencement of any individual recruitment step.

BALCA Decision:

“The CO properly denied certification because the Employer neither began recruitment nor filed its application within the PWD validity period."

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