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I-9 E-Verify Immigration Compliance

Immigration Compliance Provisions in Immigration Reform Bill; by Bruce Buchanan, Siskind Susser

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There are a number of immigration compliance provisions for employers in the proposed Comprehensive Immigration Reform bill, called "Border Security, Economic Opportunity and Immigration Modernization Act" (the Act).


A major component in the Act for employers is that all employers would be required to utilize E-Verify. Immediately, federal agencies and federal contractors would be required to utilize E-Verify. After one year, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) may require "employers responsible for protecting, securing, operating, part of the critical infrastructure" to use E-Verify. Applicable employers would be required to use E-Verify according to the following, after passage of the Act and publication of applicable regulations: (a) 2 years - employers with 5000+ employees; (b) 3 years - employers with more than 500 workers; (c) 4 years - agricultural employers and all other employers; and (d) 5 years - Indian tribes. 


The amended version of the Act makes it clear that if E-Verify is currently required in one's state(s) where it conducts business, an employer must continue to comply with the state law even if the federal provisions for E-Verify have not gone in effect.


Another important aspect of this legislation for employers is that if an employee received  "registered provisional immigration (RPI) status", which would provide for lawful employment status, an employer would not be considered to have previously employed an undocumented worker in violation of IRCA. 


As the bill makes it through the House and Senate, you can probably expect some of these provisions to be amended.

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