Hiring always comes with a certain degree of uncertainty. Will this candidate be as competent as his references say? Is a bright-but-inexperienced applicant worth taking a chance on? Those are high-stakes questions, but employers also need to ask an even bigger question: are prospective new employees really who they say they are? And are they legally allowed to work in the U.S.?
Enter E-Verify. It’s an eligibility verification program that’s jointly administered by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, USCIS and the Social Security Administration. Employers who are enrolled with E-Verify simply enter information from a new hire’s I-9 form, which is checked against DHS and SSA databases. If the hire isn’t authorized to work in the United States, E-Verify will alert the employer.
The system isn’t supposed to play any role in how your company makes hiring decisions; rather, it allows you to make sure that the employees you have chosen to hire are legally eligible to work.
Some states require all private employers to use E-Verify (although that’s hard to enforce), and using the system is mandatory for only some businesses in other states. A group of Republican congressmen introduced a bill in late 2017 that would require U.S. employers to verify the employment status of all new hires with E-Verify. Until such legislation is passed, most employers still have a choice about whether or not they take advantage of the program.
Commonwealth Payroll & HR can help. E-verify is integrated into iSolved’s Onboarding platform. For a small fee, we can conduct the E-verify check on all new employees before they’re officially added to your roster. Contact us to learn more or to get started.
Free Webinar: Form I-9 and E-Verify: Keys to Compliance
An I-9 audit can be an intimidating event. If you haven’t properly completed or maintained your I-9s, it can be a costly one as well. During this session, you’ll learn critical filing and retention requirements so you can be confident that your organization is compliant. We’ll review the various sections of the I-9 in-depth, discuss the acceptable documents needed to complete it properly, and examine the penalties for not complying with the instructions. We’ll also briefly discuss the E-Verify system and provide some best practice suggestions on when to conduct a voluntary internal audit of your I-9 files.
Friday, May 18, 12:00 PM – 1:00 PM EDT