Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) is actively engaged in immigration compliance enforcement against employers. Many employers believe that by simply completing a Form I-9 for the company's employees, they are in compliance.
Unfortunately, this is a myth. In fact, ICE has issued a list of 12 best employment practices it believes all employers should be doing in order to be in full compliance with the immigration regulations, and they are outlined below.
ICE Best Employment Practices
Use E-Verify, the DHS employment eligibility verification program, to verify the employment eligibility of all new hires.
Use the Social Security Number Verification Service (SSNVS) for wage reporting purposes. Make a good faith effort to correct and verify the names and Social Security numbers of the current workforce and work with employees to resolve any discrepancies.
Establish a written hiring and employment eligibility verification policy.
Establish an internal compliance and training program related to the hiring and employment verification process, including completion of Form I-9, how to detect fraudulent use of documents in the verification process, and how to use E-Verify and SSNVS.
Require the Form I-9 and E-Verify process to be conducted only by individuals who have received appropriate training and include a secondary review as part of each employee's verification to minimize the potential for a single individual to subvert the process.
Arrange for annual Form I-9 audits by an external auditing firm or a trained employee not otherwise involved in the Form I-9 process.
Establish a procedure to report to ICE credible information of suspected criminal misconduct in the employment eligibility verification process.
Ensure that contractors and/or subcontractors establish procedures to comply with employment eligibility verification requirements.
Encourage contractors and/or subcontractors to incorporate IMAGE Best Practices and when practicable incorporate the use of E-Verify in subcontractor agreements.
Establish a protocol for responding to letters or other information received from federal and state government agencies indicating that there is a discrepancy between the agency's information and the information provided by the employer or employee (for example, "no match" letters received from the Social Security Administration) and provide employees with an opportunity to make a good faith effort to resolve the discrepancy when it is not due to employer error.
Establish a tip line mechanism (inbox, email, etc.) for employees to report activity relating to the employment of unauthorized workers, and a protocol for responding to credible employee tips.
Establish and maintain appropriate policies, practices and safeguards to ensure that authorized workers are not treated differently with respect to hiring, firing, or recruitment or referral for a fee or during the Form I-9, E-Verify or SSNVS processes because of citizenship status or national origin. Maintain copies of any documents accepted as proof of identity and/or employment authorization for all new hires.
Danielle Atchison, Business Immigration Attorney MDIVANI CORPORATE IMMIGRATION LAW FIRM 7007 College Blvd., # 460, Overland Park, KS 66211 USA Phone :: 913.317.6200 Email :: DAtchison@uslegalimmigration.com