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I9 Everify (2)

I9 Everify (2)

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Published by elizabeth9062
E-Verify enrollment is required for federal contractors & Florida state agenies, among others. Employers may want to ernoll to protect themselves from fines or jail or to increase competitiveness. This article explains how and why.
E-Verify enrollment is required for federal contractors & Florida state agenies, among others. Employers may want to ernoll to protect themselves from fines or jail or to increase competitiveness. This article explains how and why.

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Published by: elizabeth9062 on Jan 12, 2011
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E-Verify Enrollment: APotentialMarketing Tool forFlorida Employers?
(Forthcoming in “The Checkoff”,a publication of the Labor and Employment Law Section of theFlorida Bar)
By Elizabeth Ricci, Esq.Governor Scott’s Platform
Immigration was one of Governor Rick Scott’s keycampaign issues. On hisfirstday in office he issued anExecutive Order
which requiresstate agencies to use the E-Verify system to verifyemployment eligibility of stateemployees and contractors. 
What is E-Verify? 
E-Verify isthe internet-basedcompanion to Form I-9Employment EligibilityVerification that allowsanemployer, in three to fiveseconds,to determineaworkers employmentauthorization status bycomparing informationlisted onForm I-9withsome 455 millionSocial Security records and 80million Homeland Security visa,citizenship and U.S. passportrecords.
Voluntary vs. MandatoryEnrollment
 The Department of HomelandSecurity strongly encourages,but does not currently require,states to mandate employersenrollment in E-Verify.At thistime, however, four statesrequirethatall employers beenrolledin the systemwhilenine have some form of E-Verifyrequirement. There are sevenstates, including Florida
withpending legislation that wouldrequire enrollment. To dateonlythe state of Illinois barsemployers from E-Verifyenrollment.
 Also, asof September 8, 2009, certainfederal contractors must enrollnew and existing employees inthe system.
E-Verify was hailed by PresidentGeorge W. Bush as “the bestmeans available to confirm thework authorization of theworkforce.
Likewise, otheradvocates of enrollment claim“[t]he statistics show E-Verifyworks . . ..Even for employeeswho receive initial mismatchesand are later confirmed as workauthorized, E-Verify informsthem of possible errors withtheir government records. Byclearing up mismatches soonerrather than later, E-Verify cansave these employeessignificant time andfrustration.”
In contrast, opponents such asthe American ImmigrationLawyers Association (AILA) claimthat “E-Verify does noteffectively root out allundocumented workers. Someundocumented workers will beerroneously confirmed as
authorized to work. E-Verifycannot identify counterfeit,stolen, or borrowed identitydocuments. A worker maypresentgooddocuments that check out through E-Verify, butE-Verify cannot confirm that thedocument belongs to the personpresenting them.
Similarly,AILA notes that “Due to errors inthe Social SecurityAdministration and DHSdatabases, some citizens andlegal workers will receivetentative nonconfirmations, oreven final nonconfirmations,and will not be able to resolvethe discrepancy or may noteven know about the problem. They will be denied employmentand paychecks.”
Unintended Consequence of Voluntary Enrollment
Regardless of the legalrequirement, I-9 compliance andE-Verify enrollment might beusedasa way to market toconsumersdesirous of assurances that businesses withwhom they deal hire onlyauthorized workers.Accordingto Tallahassee-basedemployment law attorneyRobert J.Sniffen, “The I-9 is adeceptively simple form forwhich the consequences of non-compliance canmeancivil andcriminal penalties. If the systemcontinues to be free,if legalworkers are not harmed by itsuse and if Florida businessescan benefit by increasingcompetitiveness, Floridaemployers should considervoluntary enrollment.”
Likewise, governmentalconsultant and lobbyist PaigeCater-Smith,with Governance, Inc.,noted “the importance of E-Verify enrollment cannot beoverstated. The potentialwindfall to Florida businessescontracting with the federalgovernment is well worthenrollment.”
As an online counterpart to theI-9, E-Verify may provide ameans of quickly verifyingworkers’ employment eligibility.All state agencies under thedirection of the Governor mustnow use E-Verify and, althoughsome are concerned aboutfederal database errors, all stateagencies must now use E-Verifyand all Sunshine Stateemployers may soon berequired to do so either due tomarket conditions or state law.iEO 11-02 Verification of Employment Status.ii Uscis.gov/everify(accessedDec. 1, 2010).iiiH.B.219, 112
Leg. Sess. (Fla.2010)would have requiredstatecontractors to use E-Verifybutwas not sponsored in theSenate.ivhttp://www.numbersusa.com/content/learn/enforcement/state/local-policies/map-states-mandatory-e-verify-laws.html (accessed Dec. 1, 2010).

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