§ 655.1305Assurances and obligations of H-2A employers.
An employer seeking to employ H-2A workers must attest as part of the Application for Temporary Employment Certification that it will abide by the following conditions of this subpart:
(a) The job opportunity is and will continue through the recruitment period to be open to any qualified U.S. worker regardless of race, color, national origin, age, sex, religion, handicap, or citizenship, and the employer has conducted and will continue to conduct the required recruitment, in accordance with regulations, and has been unsuccessful in locating sufficient numbers of qualified U.S. applicants for the job opportunity for which certification is sought. Any U.S. workers who applied or apply for the job were or will be rejected only for lawful, job-related reasons, and those not rejected on this basis have been or will be hired. In addition, the employer attests that it will retain records of all rejections as required by § 655.119.
(b) The employer is offering terms and working conditions which are not less favorable than those offered to the H-2A worker(s) and are not less than the minimum terms and conditions required by this subpart.
(c) The specific job opportunity for which the employer is requesting H-2A certification is not vacant because the former occupant is on strike or being locked out in the course of a labor dispute.
(d) The employer will continue to cooperate with the SWA by accepting referrals of all eligible U.S. workers who apply (or on whose behalf an application is made) for the job opportunity until the end of the recruitment period as specified in § 655.102(f)(3).
(e) During the period of employment that is the subject of the labor certification application, the employer will:
(1) Comply with applicable Federal, State and local employment-related laws and regulations, including employment-related health and safety laws;
(2) Provide for or secure housing for those workers who are not reasonably able to return to their permanent residence at the end of the work day, without charge to the worker, that complies with the applicable standards as set forth in § 655.104(d);
(3) Where required, has timely requested a preoccupancy inspection of the housing and, if one has been conducted, received certification;
(4) Provide insurance, without charge to the worker, under a State workers' compensation law or otherwise, that meets the requirements of § 655.104(e); and
(5) Provide transportation in compliance with all applicable Federal, State or local laws and regulations between the worker's living quarters (i.e., housing provided by the employer under § 655.104(d)) and the employer's worksite without cost to the worker.
(f) Upon the separation from employment of H-2A worker(s) employed under the labor certification application, if such separation occurs prior to the end date of the employment specified in the application, the employer will notify the Department and DHS in writing (or any other method specified by the Department or DHS) of the separation from employment not later than 2 work days after such separation is discovered by the employer. The procedures for reporting abandonments and abscondments are outlined in § 655.104(n) of this subpart.
(g) The offered wage rate is the highest of the AEWR in effect at the time recruitment is initiated, the prevailing hourly wage or piece rate, or the Federal or State minimum wage, and the employer will pay the offered wage during the entire period of the approved labor certification.
(h) The offered wage is not based on commission, bonuses, or other incentives, unless the employer guarantees a wage paid on a weekly, bi-weekly, or monthly basis that equals or exceeds the AEWR, prevailing hourly wage or piece rate, or the legal Federal or State minimum wage, whichever is highest.
(i) The job opportunity is a full-time temporary position, calculated to be at least 30 hours per work week, the qualifications for which do not substantially deviate from the normal and accepted qualifications required by employers that do not use H-2A workers in the same or comparable occupations or crops.
(j) The employer has not laid off and will not lay off any similarly employed U.S. worker in the occupation that is the subject of the Application for Temporary Employment Certification in the area of intended employment except for lawful, job related reasons within 60 days of the date of need, or if the employer has laid off such workers, it has offered the job opportunity that is the subject of the application to those laid-off U.S. worker(s) and the U.S. worker(s) either refused the job opportunity or was rejected for the job opportunity for lawful, job-related reasons.
(k) The employer has not and will not intimidate, threaten, restrain, coerce, blacklist, or in any manner discriminate against, and has not and will not cause any person to intimidate, threaten, restrain, coerce, blacklist, or in any manner discriminate against, any person who has with just cause:
(1) Filed a complaint under or related to sec. 218 of the INA at 8 U.S.C. 1188, or this subpart or any other Department regulation promulgated under sec. 218 of the INA;
(2) Instituted or caused to be instituted any proceeding under or related to sec. 218 of the INA, or this subpart or any other Department regulation promulgated under sec. 218 of the INA;
(3) Testified or is about to testify in any proceeding under or related to sec. 218 of the INA or this subpart or any other Department regulation promulgated under sec. 218 of the INA;
(4) Consulted with an employee of a legal assistance program or an attorney on matters related to sec. 218 of the INA or this subpart or any other Department regulation promulgated under sec. 218 of the INA; or
(5) Exercised or asserted on behalf of himself/herself or others any right or protection afforded by sec. 218 of the INA, or this subpart or any other Department regulation promulgated under sec. 218 of the INA.
(l) The employer shall not discharge any person because of that person's taking any action listed in paragraphs (k)(1) through (k)(5) of this section.
(m) All fees associated with processing the temporary labor certification will be paid in a timely manner.
(n) The employer will inform H-2A workers of the requirement that they leave the U.S. at the end of the period certified by the Department or separation from the employer, whichever is earlier, as required under § 655.111, unless the H-2A worker is being sponsored by another subsequent employer.
(o) The employer and its agents have not sought or received payment of any kind from the employee for any activity related to obtaining labor certification, including payment of the employer's attorneys' fees, application fees, or recruitment costs. For purposes of this paragraph, payment includes, but is not limited to, monetary payments, wage concessions (including deductions from wages, salary, or benefits), kickbacks, bribes, tributes, in kind payments, and free labor. This provision does not prohibit employers or their agents from receiving reimbursement for costs that are the responsibility of the worker, such as government required passport or visa fees.
(p) The employer has contractually forbidden any foreign labor contractor or recruiter whom the employer engages in international recruitment of H-2A workers to seek or receive payments from prospective employees, except as provided for in DHS regulations at 8 CFR 214.2(h)(5)(xi)(A).
(q) The applicant is either a fixed-site employer, an agent or recruiter, an H-2ALC (as defined in these regulations), or an association.
Title 20 published on 2012-04-01
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