E-Verify is a new way to ensure that the people you hire are eligible to work in the U.S. We've all struggled with trying to follow the mandate of the law since the advent of the I-9 form way back in 1986. Verifying the documentation presented to us from the newly hired employee usually goes something like this: holding the document in our hand (does it feel authentic?), viewing the document (does it look real?), checking dates (when does it expire?), copying all the information onto the I-9 and then hoping that all is in order. Then, we sign the I-9, knowing that if we missed something we could possible be fined personally for up to $10,000. Haven't you often shook your head and asked: Why doesn't the government give us a more accurate way to do this?
Well, they finally have. And, not only have they done it, they will get you the results within seconds! 93% are instantly verified within three (3) to five (5) seconds! Another 1.2 % are verified after an electronic, 24-hour USCIS check. Talk about your peace of mind! It's definitely peace of mind for me! E-Verify is a free and voluntary program and it is the best means available for employers to determine employment eligibility of new hires and the validity of their Social Security numbers.
You must still complete the I-9 form. You then fill out the electronic verification form and E-Verify then compares the information against more than 4.25 million records in the Social Security Administration's database and more than 60 million records in the Dept. of Homeland Security's immigration databases. According to the statistics on E-Verify's webpage, only 5.3% of employees are not confirmed as work-authorized. That means that about 95 of 100 employees are confirmed as work-authorized. E-Verify also includes naturalization data, which helps to instantly confirm the citizenship status of naturalized U.S. citizens.
E-Verify's Photo Screening Tool is the beginning of biometric verification within the E-Verify system. This feature will be the first step in giving employers the tools they need to detect identity theft in the employment eligibility process. The Photo Screening Tool allows an employer to check the photo on the new hire's driver's license, state I.D. or other authorized photo I.D. used for verifying employment eligibility. The photo is checked against the 14.8 million images stored in DHS immigration databases.
There are currently more than 64,000 employers who participate in E-Verify and there are approximately 1,000 new enrollments each week. It is now mandatory that all Federal Contractors participate in the E-Verify system. So if you are planning to do business with the government or are already doing business with the government, you must register with E-Verify.
Use E-Verify? (987KB PDF) I have included links here so that you may go directly to the website to learn more. Also, the main website is E-Verify. Also, if, after reading everything on the website, you feel that learning and using E-Verify is too complicated, too time consuming, or you don't have computer access, there are several qualified businesses that will handle everything for you. The people who run these businesses are known as Federally Approved E-Verify Designated Agent. You can find many of these businesses on the internet with a quick search at www.cuil.com.
As with any hiring process, employees still have their rights under the E-Verify system. And in fact, on the website, there is a specific section devoted to employee's rights. The site includes a "Know Your Rights - Quick List" for employees. Just as with most other government programs, the employer must post a notice in the workplace or on the jobsite informing employees of their use of E-Verify. If an employee receives an information mismatch from their I-9 form and SSA and DHS databases, the employer must furnish to the employee information about how to challenge the information mismatch and give them eight federal government work days to contact the appropriate federal agency to contest the information mismatch. For Employees