I-9 Audits

The Employment Eligibility Verification Form I-9 is a form issued by the U.S. Citizen and Immigration Services to verify the identity and employment eligibility of workers within the United States. U.S. Employers... more +
The Employment Eligibility Verification Form I-9 is a form issued by the U.S. Citizen and Immigration Services to verify the identity and employment eligibility of workers within the United States. U.S. Employers must require all employees, both citizens and non-citizens, to complete an I-9 and present supporting documentation, such as a passport or green card. less -
News & Analysis as of

DOJ Hikes Fines for Immigration Related Violations

Despite the numerous Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) headlines, the last two years have brought a significant decrease in workplace audits: 3.127 audits in 2013 to 435 audits in 2015. Similarly, the fines during...more

Immigration Compliance Alert: Increase in Fines for Immigration Related Violations Take Effect on August 1, 2016

Up until 2008, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) focused its enforcement efforts almost exclusively on undocumented workers. For instance, ICE made 6,000 workforce enforcement strategy-related arrests in 2008; only...more

Form I-9 Compliance: Tips for Employers to Avoid Liability

Employers are required under federal immigration law to verify the employment eligibility of new employees by reviewing acceptable documents provided by the employee—to establish the employee’s identity and work...more

To Audit, or Not to Audit: That is the I-9 Question

For some time, employers have been confused about how to handle situations relating to potential undocumented workers in their workforces. On December 14, 2015, to address some of this confusion, the U.S. Department of...more

How to self-audit your I-9 forms

U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) intends to increase its investigation efforts during 2016 to ensure employers have met their obligations to properly verify the identity and employment authorization of its...more

What Does California’s New E-Verify Law Mean For Employers?

Our blog post on January 5, 2016 summarized California’s new E-Verify law and other updates. So what should California employers do differently now with respect to I-9s and E-Verify? Enrollment in E-Verify remains voluntary...more

Guidance on Internal I-9 Audits

Because a government inspection can occur with only three days written notice, some employers choose to initiate internal audits of their company’s Forms I-9, utilizing their own personnel or attorneys with immigration or...more

Workplace Enforcement Update: New Self-Audit Guidance and a New I-9 form on its Way

This Workplace Enforcement Update covers two significant developments, namely new I-9 self-audit guidance published jointly by the Department of Homeland Security (“DHS”) and Department of Justice (“DOJ”) and the status of a...more

Immigration Corner: December 2015

Where is the Foreign Affairs Manual? As of November 19, 2015, the Foreign Affairs Manual (FAM) Chapter 9 “9 FAM” has been revised, rewritten, renumbered and relocated to 9 FAM-e on the Department of State website. This...more

Conducting Internal I-9 Audits – ICE and DOJ-OSC Provide Joint Guidance

A company’s I-9 file, which often goes unnoticed by all but a few HR professionals, can carry significant risk. Form I-9 files often serve as landmines for fines, penalties, and sanctions. Companies can mitigate these risks...more

DOJ and ICE Publish Joint Guidance on Internal I-9 Audits

On December 14, 2015, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) Civil Rights Division issued joint guidance for employers conducting internal Form I-9 Audits. The two agencies...more

Employers May Request Alternative Documents Following an Internal I-9 Audit

On October 23, the U.S. Department of Justice’s (DOJ) Office of Special Counsel for Immigration Related Unfair Employment Practices (OSC) issued a technical assistance letter (TAL) in response to an employer’s request...more

Compliance Corner: Hiring and Maintaining a Legal Workforce

We’re all busy and regardless of your industry, those responsible for hiring our workforce are pulled in many different ways and have to keep abreast of countless local, state and federal workplace related laws and...more

OCAHO Imposes $605,250 Fine for I-9 Violations

On July 8, 2015, the Office of the Chief Administrative Hearing Officer (OCAHO), the administrative court with jurisdiction to review penalties for I-9 violations, issued a decision in the matter of United States v. Hartmann...more

Corporation Pleads Guilty and Forfeits $1 Million for Hiring Unauthorized Workers

On July 14, 2015, the U.S. Department of Justice, U.S. Attorney’s Office, announced that a corporation domiciled in Pennsylvania pled guilty to a one-count Bill of Information charging the company with harboring unauthorized...more

Health Care E-Note - June 2015

In This Issue: - Why, Again, Do You Think That Worker is an Independent Contractor? - I-9 and E-Verify Compliance Practices for Temporary Labor and Contractors - Excerpt From Why, Again, Do You Think That...more

I-9 COMPLIANCE - A Fixed Fee Program

Investigations and audits of Form I-9 documents by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents are steeply on the rise, and the Obama administration is promising to keep the heat on employers in the coming...more

Polsinelli Podcast - The Climate for I9 Audits in 2015 [Audio]

Employers are required by law to verify an employee's identity and authorization to work in the United States by completing a Form I-9. This responsibility should be taken seriously as companies can face fines for paperwork...more

Severe Fines for I-9 Noncompliance

During the first quarter of 2015, The Office of Chief Administrative Hearing Officer (OCAHO) issued five decisions involving employer violations related to Form I-9. In its latest decision (United States v. Liberty Packaging,...more

OCAHO Finds PEO Liable for Near Maximum I-9 Fines for False Employer Attestation Violations: Is Your Business Similarly Exposed?

On January 20, 2015, Judge Ellen Thomas, a federal administrative law judge (ALJ) with the Office of the Chief Administrative Hearing Officer (OCAHO), a division of the Executive Office of Immigration Review within the U.S....more

Do I Need a Lawyer to Assist My Company with an I-9 Audit by ICE?

A couple of recent decisions by the Office of the Chief Administrative Hearings Officer (OCAHO) demonstrate the importance of timely retaining experienced counsel to represent you and assist you with government I-9 audits....more

Knowingly Employing Unauthorized Workers – Can You Give Employees a Second Chance to Provide Valid I-9 Documentation?

Knowingly employing an unauthorized worker is prohibited by federal law. As a result, I-9 audits are a necessary part of doing business, as the penalties for noncompliance are too severe to ignore this fact....more

Five Things Employers Should Consider When Conducting an I-9 Self-Audit

The year 2009 marked a dramatic change in Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (“ICE”) workforce enforcement strategy. Up until 2008, ICE focused its enforcement efforts almost exclusively on illegal workers. For instance,...more

Undocumented Worker Can Cause Health Plan Problems

Employers know that since the 1980s they have been required to check the lawful work status of employees that they hire through the I-9 process. Employers also know that Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) can audit...more

OIG 2015 Plan Focuses on ICE’s Business Selection Process for I-9 Investigation

As part of its 2015 fiscal year Annual Performance Plan published on October 1, 2014, the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) Office of Inspector General (OIG) will review the approach of Immigration and Customs...more

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