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E-Verify Dos and Don'ts

Author: XpertHR Editorial Team


The Immigration Reform and Control Act (IRCA) requires employers to verify their employees' identity and their eligibility to work in the US. The verification process requires that employers and employees fill out a Form I-9, and that the employee provide documentation to the employer verifying their identity and work authorization.

One way for employers to verify the information entered by employees on the Form I-9 is to submit the information through the federal electronic verification system called E-Verify. E-Verify compares the information provided on the Form I-9 to the data contained in Social Security Administration's (SSA) and the Department of Homeland Security's (DHS) databases. Employers are then advised of the newly hired employee's eligibility to work in the US.

Participation in E-Verify is free, and it is voluntary for most employers except where mandated by state law or the federal contractor rule. An employer electing to use the optional alternative procedure to the in-person physical examination requirement for identity and work authorization documentation must also enroll in and be a participant in good standing in E-Verify. Verifying the employment authorization of a new hire using E-Verify creates a presumption (which can be refuted) that the employer has not knowingly hired an unauthorized worker.

The following chart provides guidelines for E-Verify employers.