By now most employers, regardless of size, are well aware that employers have certain responsibilities under immigration law during the hiring process. Failure to comply can be a costly event. Not knowing the law will not excuse business owners or management of business establishments for 1-9 compliance failures. For example the current Form I-9 is valid until Jan. 21, 2017. An announcement was made On Aug. 25, 2016 that the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) approved a revised Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification.
USCIS must publish a revised form by Nov. 22, 2016. Employers may continue using the current version of Form I-9 with a revision date of 03/08/2013 N until Jan. 21, 2017.
After Jan. 21, 2017, all previous versions of Form I-9 will be invalid. You can keep up with the changes by subscribing to https://www.govdelivery.com. There are many web sites devoted to the 1-9 including U S Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE) https://www.ice.gov/
Did you know? The current administration has dramatically increased the number of I-9 audits to historically high levels, and promises that I-9 enforcement efforts will remain a high priority. For example, on one day, June 15, 2011, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) issued 1,000 Notices of Inspection of I-9 forms and subpoenas to various U.S. companies large and small. I-9 investigations are at an all-time high, with more than 3,000 audits taking place in 2012 compared to only 250 in 2007.
A few reminders: An employer must: A) Verify the identity and employment authorization of each person hired after Nov. 6, 1986 and B) Complete and retain a Form I-9 for each employee required to complete the form.
An Employer must not 🙂 A) Discriminate against individuals on the basis of national origin, citizenship, or immigration status and B) Hire, recruit for a fee, or refer for a fee aliens he or she knows to be unauthorized to work in the United States.
Consider some of the penalties:
- Failure to comply with the IRCA’s I-9 rules can result in significant fines, loss of access to government contracts, and highly negative publicity for your company.
- Employment of unauthorized workers may result in fines up to $16,000 and six months’ imprisonment. Employers that knowingly hire or continue to employ unauthorized aliens can be barred from competing for government contracts for a year.
- Paperwork violations can also result in significant fines. Each mistake or missing item on a form can result in a $110 penalty, topping out at $1,100 for each form. A missing form would automatically be assessed at $1,100.
You may want to have an independent 1-9 audit conducted as a strategy for ensuring that your business is compliant with immigration related employment practices.
(Excerpts from articles of Adriana Kostencki, Esq.)
Author: Robin Noah, Executive Coaches of Orange County, www.ECofOC.org