If the newspaper advertisement being used for a PERM Labor Certification contains language that certain requirements are "preferred," the certifying office (CO) officer will properly assume that "employer preferences are actually job requirements." Unless these requirements are included in the PERM application, the CO will properly deny the application. An example of this issue is a PERM Labor Certification filed by Eastern Tennessee State University (ETSU).
On August 21, 2007 ETSU filed an Application for Permanent Employment on behalf of a foreign national who was chosen for an assistant professor position. The CO issued an Audit Notification on November 19, 2007 and requested additional recruitment information. The CO specifically wanted copies of the job advertisements and other documentation that described the position. ETSU provided all of the necessary documentation. On August 28, 2009 the CO denied certification because of inconsistencies within the supplied documents. The CO stated that the Notice of Filing, job order, and job advertisements all contained job requirements that exceed those listed on the application. It was also noted that four minimally qualified American candidates were rejected during the hiring process. As a result, the CO concluded that ETSU did not conduct competitive or thorough job recruitment. ETSU filed a request for review on September 16, 2009. In the request, ETSU stated that the various recruitment documents did not include additional requirements. Instead, they explained that the extra skills listed were merely preferences. ETSU mentioned that the four American candidates were rejected because they were not fluent enough in Spanish. The CO forwarded the request for review to BALCA. Once ETSU responded with the intent of proceeding with the appeal, the CO sent a letter to BALCA that outlined the reasons that certification was denied.