Employers in Lombard are required to properly document their employees’ eligibility to work in the United States. Anyone who hires employees must obtain verifying documentation for each and every worker and keep it on file in order to avoid potential fines and other penalties from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).
Requirements for employee verification in Lombard are listed below, but these requirements are subject to change. Employers who are uncertain as to whether they are in compliance with the verification requirements should consult with an experienced immigration attorney.
The I-9 Form is Critical
Workers hired in the U.S. must fill out and submit a Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification, for every employer for whom they work. This form is used to verify identity and employment authorization for both U.S. citizens and noncitizens. The employer also fills out a portion of the form.
On the I-9 form, employees must attest to their ability to work lawfully in the United States. In addition to signing the form, employees must provide acceptable forms of documentation providing information on their identity and employment eligibility.
Employers must then examine the documents to ensure their reasonable authenticity and ensure they fulfill the requirements for employee verification in Lombard. Finally, the employer must keep the I-9 form on file and have it available for inspection by agents of the U.S. government.
Acceptable Documentation to Verify Identity
Form I-9 lists the various documents employees may use to verify identification, as well as documents acceptable for verifying employment authorization. Some documents serve dual purposes and may be accepted to verify both identity and employment eligibility.
Documents that employees may use to prove their identity include driver’s licenses and identification cards issued by a U.S. state or territory or other government entity school identification cards, voter registration cards, military cards or draft records, tribal documents, merchant mariner cards, and Canadian driver’s licenses. Identification cards must require a picture or other identifying information, but employees under the age of 18 may also use school report cards, medical records or daycare records.
Acceptable Documentation to Verify Employment Authorization
The list of documents employees may present for verification of employment authorization includes Social Security cards, original or certified copy of a birth certificate, tribal documents, U.S. citizen ID cards, and employment authorization documents issued by the Department of Homeland Security.
Documents that fulfill both the identification and employee verification requirements include U.S. passports, permanent resident cards, employment authorization documents with photographs, and—for certain foreign nationals—a foreign passport and a properly endorsed Form I-94 or I-94A.
Employers are prohibited from discriminating against citizens or noncitizens who are eligible to work in the U.S. They may not require employees to provide a specific type of identification, so long as the identification meets the government’s criteria. Employers also may not refuse to hire someone or discharge an employee solely because their I-9 documentation is due to expire sometime in the future.
Penalties for Failure to Follow Employee Verification Requirements
Employers in Lombard who violate employment verification laws and requirements, either by failing to keep the required employee verification documents on file or by discriminating against employees, are subject to civil fines. If such behavior becomes a pattern of violations, criminal penalties may apply as well. Violators may also make themselves ineligible for government contracts and may become subject to court orders requiring them to hire or provide back pay to workers against whom they discriminated.
How an Attorney Could Help with Employee Verification Requirements in Lombard
Federal government fines may be levied at high levels, so both employers and employees need to take the requirements for employee verification in Lombard seriously. If you are an employee who is unable to fulfill verification requirements or an employer who needs assistance complying with your government obligations, contact us today to seek assistance from an experienced immigration lawyer.