501.20 Debarment and revocation.§ 501.20 Debarment and revocation.
(a) Debarment of an employer. The WHD Administrator may debar an employer or any successor in interest to that employer from receiving future labor certifications under 20 CFR part 655, subpart B, subject to the time limits set forth in paragraph (c) of this section, if: the WHD Administrator finds that the employer substantially violated a material term or condition of its temporary labor certification, with respect to H-2A workers, workers in corresponding employment, or U.S. workers improperly rejected for employment, or improperly laid off or displaced, by issuing a Notice of Debarment.
(b) Debarment of an agent or an attorney. The WHD Administrator may debar an agent or attorney from participating in any action under 8 U.S.C. 1188, 20 CFR part 655, subpart B or 29 CFR part 501, if the WHD Administrator finds that the agent or attorney participated in an employer's substantial violation, by issuing a Notice of Debarment. The OFLC Administrator may not issue future labor certifications to any employer represented by a debarred agent or attorney, subject to the time limits set forth in paragraph (c) of this section.
(c) Statute of Limitations and Period of Debarment. (1) The WHD Administrator must issue any Notice of Debarment no later than 2 years after the occurrence of the violation.
(2) No employer, attorney, or agent may be debarred under this subpart for more than 3 years from the date of the final agency decision.
(d) Definition of violation. For the purposes of this section, a violation includes:
(1) One or more acts of commission or omission on the part of the employer or the employer's agent which involve:
(i) Failure to pay or provide the required wages, benefits or working conditions to the employer's H-2A workers and/or workers in corresponding employment;
(ii) Failure, except for lawful, job-related reasons, to offer employment to qualified U.S. workers who applied for the job opportunity for which certification was sought;
(iii) Failure to comply with the employer's obligations to recruit U.S. workers;
(iv) Improper layoff or displacement of U.S. workers or workers in corresponding employment;
(v) Failure to comply with one or more sanctions or remedies imposed by the WHD Administrator for violation(s) of contractual or other H-2A obligations, or with one or more decisions or orders of the Secretary or a court under 8 U.S.C. 1188, 20 CFR part 655, subpart B, or the regulations in this part;
(vi) Impeding an investigation of an employer under 8 U.S.C. 1188, 20 CFR part 655, subpart B, or the regulations in this part;
(vii) Employing an H-2A worker outside the area of intended employment, or in an activity/activities not listed in the job order or outside the validity period of employment of the job order, including any approved extension thereof;
(viii) A violation of the requirements of 20 CFR 655.135(j) or (k);
(ix) A violation of any of the provisions listed in § 501.4(a) of this subpart; or
(x) A single heinous act showing such flagrant disregard for the law that future compliance with program requirements cannot reasonably be expected.
(2) In determining whether a violation is so substantial as to merit debarment, the factors set forth in § 501.19(b) shall be considered.
(e) Procedural Requirements. The Notice of Debarment must be in writing, must state the reason for the debarment finding, including a detailed explanation of the grounds for and the duration of the debarment, must identify appeal opportunities under § 501.33 and a timeframe under which such rights must be exercised and must comply with § 501.32. The debarment will take effect 30 days from the date the Notice of Debarment is issued, unless a request for review is properly filed within 30 days from the issuance of the Notice of Debarment. The timely filing of an administrative appeal stays the debarment pending the outcome of the appeal as provided in § 501.33(d).
(f) Debarment involving members of associations. If, after investigation, the WHD Administrator determines that an individual employer-member of a joint employer association has committed a substantial violation, the debarment determination will apply only to that member unless the WHD Administrator determines that the association or another association member participated in the violation, in which case the debarment will be invoked against the association or other complicit association member(s) as well.
(g) Debarment involving associations acting as sole employers. If, after investigation, the WHD Administrator determines that an association acting as a sole employer has committed a substantial violation, the debarment determination will apply only to the association and any successor in interest to the debarred association.
(h) Debarment involving associations acting as joint employers. If, after investigation, the WHD Administrator determines that an association acting as a joint employer with its members has committed a substantial violation, the debarment determination will apply only to the association, and will not be applied to any individual employer-member of the association. However, if the WHD Administrator determines that the member participated in, had knowledge of, or had reason to know of the violation, the debarment may be invoked against the complicit association member as well. An association debarred from the H-2A temporary labor certification program will not be permitted to continue to file as a joint employer with its members during the period of the debarment.
(i) Revocation. The WHD may recommend to the OFLC Administrator the revocation of a temporary agricultural labor certification if the WHD finds that the employer:
(1) Substantially violated a material term or condition of the approved temporary labor certification.
(2) Failed to cooperate with a DOL investigation or with a DOL official performing an investigation, inspection, or law enforcement function under 8 U.S.C. 1188, 20 CFR part 655, subpart B, or this part; or
(3) Failed to comply with one or more sanctions or remedies imposed by the WHD, or with one or more decisions or orders of the Secretary or a court order secured by the Secretary under 8 U.S.C. 1188, 20 CFR part 655, subpart B, or this part.