On November 19, 2014, the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) approved the VETS-4212 form that will be replacing the VETS-100 and VETS-100A forms beginning with the 2015 filing period, which opens August 1. The new form no longer requires federal contractors to report on specific categories of protected veterans within job categories and instead collects the total number of protected veterans within each job category. The new VETS-4212 form can be found at: http://www.reginfo.gov/public/do/PRAViewIC?ref_nbr=201407-1293-001&icID=14762.
The new VETS-4212 form raises some issues regarding the post-offer Invitation to Identify Protected Veteran status as required by 41 CFR 60-300.42(b). The VEVRAA regulations require the pre-offer Invitation to Self-Identify to invite the applicant to inform the contractor whether the applicant believes that he or she is a Protected Veteran who may be covered by the Act. The post-offer Invitation to Self-Identify, however, is required to invite the applicant to inform the contractor whether the applicant believes that he or she belongs to one or more of the specific categories of Protected Veteran for which the contractor is required to report pursuant to 41 CFR part 61–300. With the recent revisions to these regulations, found at: http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2014-09-25/pdf/2014-22818.pdf, and the new VETS-4212 form only requiring an aggregate number of protected veterans in each job category, it appears that contractors no longer need to solicit the specific Protected Veteran status on the post-offer Invitation.
We utilized the “Submit a Question to the OFCCP” function available on the OFCCP website to ask for clarification on the requirements for the post-offer Invitation. Initially we received a telephone call advising us that the agency was working on a Frequently Asked Question (FAQ). This month we received a written response that stated, “As discussed, OFCCP is working on a Frequently Asked Question (FAQ) to clarify contractors’ responsibilities regarding invitations to self-identify once the new VETS-4212 report becomes effective. Until the FAQ is published, contractors will continue to use the existing guidance prescribed in our regulations at 41 CFR §60-300.42. Please continue to monitor our website for updates.” An FAQ has not yet been published regarding the impact of the new VETS-4212 report on the post-offer Invitation to Identify.
In addition, the OFCCP’s response does not address the issue. As noted, the VETS-4212 form has been approved by OMB. The OFCCP may be referring to the use of the form, which will not begin until August 1, 2015. The response also ignores the wording of the OFCCP regulations at 41 CFR 60-300.42(b) which state, “In addition to the invitation in paragraph (a) of this section, the contractor shall invite applicants to inform the contractor whether the applicant believes that he or she belongs to one or more of the specific categories of protected veterans for which the contractor is required to report pursuant to 41 CFR part 61–300.” Note the connection between the OFCCP regulations found at 41 CFR 60-300 and the Veterans’ Employment and Training Service (VETS) regulations found at 41 CFR 61-300.
It appears that contractors may use a post-offer Invitation to Identify that is identical to the pre-offer Invitation to Identify, or use a post-offer Invitation to Identify that asks the specific category or categories of protected veteran. Contractors that are concerned with asking for more than is necessary should use the pre-offer format. Please see the Downloads section of our website for recommended forms.
Please contact us by calling (732) 446-2529 or sending us an e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested in discussing the Impact of the VETS-4212 on the Post-Offer Invitation of Protected Veteran Status.