What should employers know?
As of March 2019, the Social Security Administration (SSA) has sent more than 577,000 notification letters to employers that have been identified as having discrepancies between a name and social security number (SSN) submitted on the form W-2.
Why should employers care?
If you receive a no-match letter, you must NOT ignore it because it may be used against you. Failure to pay attention to a no-match letter is very difficult to defend in an audit by Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE), putting employers at risk of serious consequences like hefty fines or even jail time. No match letters can be used to show an employer had “constructive knowledge” that some workers may not have been work authorized.
What should employers do?
Do not automatically take adverse action against an employee, as a no-match letter does not necessarily mean the employee is not work authorized. Employers should have Plans, Policies, and Procedures in place to address any documentary discrepancies in a non-discriminatory manner before responding to these no-match letters. The plans, policies, and procedures should comply with US immigration law, and should include an annual audit of Forms I-9 for current employees.
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The information provided here does not constitute legal advice. It is general information regarding law and policy that may be applicable to your particular HR issue or legal problem. Information provided in this blog, or any of our other public posts, does not create an attorney-client relationship. For specific advice you can rely upon, please contact your attorney.