Finally get that promotion? Get exclusive content, tips and tools to help you excel.
Shawn Premer shows how doing the right thing for employees leads to positive business results.
Is your employee handbook keeping up with the changing world of work? With SHRM's Employee Handbook Builder get peace of mind that your handbook is up-to-date.
Build competencies, establish credibility and advance your career—while earning PDCs—at SHRM Seminars in 12 cities across the U.S. this spring.
#SHRM18 will expand your perspective – on your organization, on your career, and on the way you approach HR. Join us in Chicago June 17-20, 2018
Members may download one copy of our sample forms and templates for your personal use within your organization. Please note that all such forms and policies should be reviewed by your legal counsel for compliance with applicable law, and should be modified to suit your organization’s culture, industry, and practices. Neither members nor non-members may reproduce such samples in any other way (e.g., to republish in a book or use for a commercial purpose) without SHRM’s permission. To request permission for specific items, click on the “reuse permissions” button on the page where you find the item.
Employers are obligated to complete and maintain I-9 employment eligibility verification forms for every worker, even if the organization is using E-Verify to validate work authorization.
“E-Verify is not a replacement for the Form I-9 but rather an added layer of protection, deterring document and identity theft to a certain extent,” said Dawn Lurie, a shareholder in the Washington, D.C., office of Polsinelli and a nationally recognized expert on Form I-9 and E-Verify compliance. “In a fairly inefficient manner, employers must first complete the I-9, either on paper or electronically, and then, if enrolled in E-Verify, push or key in the information to the government’s Internet-based system.”
Golden Employment Group in Minneapolis found this out the hard way after being ordered to pay $209,600 in civil penalties for hundreds of Form I-9 violations.
The staffing company argued before the Justice Department’s Executive Office for Immigration Review that complete I-9 forms were not necessary in some cases, because it had verified those employees’ employment eligibility through E-Verify.
Golden Employment began using E-Verify in 2008. In some instances, the company had failed to complete certain sections of the Form I-9 when an employee’s eligibility for employment was confirmed by E-Verify.
As the result of an April 2013 Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) audit, Judge Ellen K. Thomas found that Golden Employment committed 465 I-9 violations, of which 236 were for not preparing I-9 forms and 89 were for failing to properly complete I-9 forms. Thomas found an additional 140 violations for failing to timely present I-9 forms. She stated that using the E-Verify program does not insulate an employer from the necessity of proper I-9 completion.
“Form I-9s are mandatory in the context of federal law while E-Verify is voluntary for most businesses, outside of federal contracts and businesses subject to certain state or county regulations,” Lurie said. “In fact, a company cannot use E-Verify without first completing the Form I-9 correctly. Information entered into the E-Verify system must come from the form itself, not the identity documents or from the employee directly.”
The E-Verify Memorandum of Understanding, which employers must sign as a condition of participation in the program, states that enrolling in E-Verify does not exempt an employer from the requirements to complete, retain and produce I-9 forms for its employees.
“Think of E-Verify as an add-on to the Form I-9, an insurance product of sorts,” Lurie said. But employers shouldn’t consider it a safe harbor from worksite enforcement, she added.
“If you misuse the system, or if certain problematic patterns are noticed by ICE, you may find your company visited by auditors. I routinely advise employers not to enroll in E-Verify until we are confident that their Form I-9 processes and procedures are tight, that their staff is appropriately trained and they have conducted an internal audit under the supervision of outside counsel.”
Roy Maurer is an online editor/manager for SHRM.
Follow him @SHRMRoy
You have successfully saved this page as a bookmark.
Please confirm that you want to proceed with deleting bookmark.
You have successfully removed bookmark.
Please log in as a SHRM member before saving bookmarks.
Please sign in as a SHRM member before saving bookmarks.
Please purchase a SHRM membership before saving bookmarks.
An error has occurred
Recommended for you
Choose from dozens of free webcasts on the most timely HR topics.
SHRM’s HR Vendor Directory contains over 3,200 companies