Category Archives: Immigration

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Georgia & North Carolina Employers must begin using E-Verify July 1, 2013 – are you ready?

By Dawn Lurie and Catherine Risoleo  In the summer of 2011, the Georgia and North Carolina legislatures each passed laws mandating the use of E-Verify for private companies. Employers were phased over time to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services’ (USCIS’) online electronic employment eligibility program based on the size of the company. On July … Continue Reading

I-94 Automation and the I-9 Process: Making the Form I-9 More Complicated

By Dawn Lurie, Catherine Risoleo & Jennifer Blloshmi This spring U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) began implementation of a phased in Form I-94, Arrival/Departure Record, automation process. The Form I-94 is issued to all visitors entering the U.S. and assists CBP in tracking temporary non-immigrants, visa overstays, and other relevant information concerning foreign nationals … Continue Reading

Filling out the Form I-9 for TPS beneficiaries: Work Permits extended for El Salvadorians

By Dawn Lurie and Catherine Risoleo On May 30, 2013, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) extended Temporary Protected Status (TPS) for El Salvadorians for an additional 18 months beginning September 10, 2013, and ending March 9, 2015. What does this mean for employers? For companies whose workforce may include individuals with TPS from El … Continue Reading

Federal Contractors: The FAR E-Verify Clause Revisited – Critical Steps a Contractor Can Take To Foster E-Verify Compliance

By Dawn Lurie  “Yes, we use E-Verify.” “Of course, our company is in compliance, we did an I-9 audit a few years ago – isn’t that the same as E-Verify?” “I know this is not an issue, because I remember being told we addressed all I-9 and E-Verify issues.” “No, the General Counsel’s office doesn’t … Continue Reading

America’s Most Complicated Form Is Updated

By Dawn Lurie and Catherine Risoleo On Friday March 8, 2013, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) rolled out a brand new version of the Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification Form, revamping America’s most complicated one page form into a two-page form. In the world of immigration compliance, the release of the new Form … Continue Reading

Spring Cleaning and the H-1B Visa Cap

By Dawn Lurie and Mahsa Aliaskari With comprehensive immigration reform on the horizon and the economy rebounding, the number of H-1B visa filings for foreign temporary professional workers is likely to significantly increase this year. American businesses recognize that to compete in the global economy, smart, competitively trained, and diverse talent is critical. In many industries, … Continue Reading

Inside Immigration Reform

By Dawn Lurie and Mahsa Aliaskari It was Tuesday, January 29, 2013, I find myself rushing to the airport to catch my flight back to DC, and I’m thinking about how the last immigration bill had died on the Senate floor in 2007. The feeling of defeat rushes back; we worked so hard to educate the Congressional … Continue Reading

ICE Worksite Fines, no thaw in sight for 2013!

By Dawn Lurie and Mahsa Aliaskari Just how much money did Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) fine US companies last year? While we don’t have an exact number confirmed by the government, we do know the fine amounts skyrocketed to over $10 million according to data released by ICE in response to a request from the Associated … Continue Reading

E-Verify on the fritz likely due to Florida going live on the RIDE Program

By Dawn Lurie and Mahsa Aliaskari Over the weekend (December 8-9, 2012), U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) installed updates to the E-Verify system. Something seems to have gone awry as our clients, around the country, have reported irregularities with processing E-Verify queries since early yesterday morning. E-Verify is a web-based, voluntary program that compares an employee’s … Continue Reading

ICE Announces 1,000 New Workplace I-9 Audits

On November 19, 2009, U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Assistant Secretary John Morton announced the issuance of Notices of Inspection to 1,000 U.S. employers and business owners whose hiring records (Forms I-9) ICE plans to audit. Compared to previous years, this is a tremendous increase in ICE’s effort to actively deter unlawful employment practices … Continue Reading

New Stimulus Bill Affects H1-B Hiring

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA or the "Stimulus Bill") was enacted on February 17, 2009, and Section 1611 – the Employ American Workers Act (EAWA) – severely limits certain employers, namely banks and other financial institutions, who receive funding under the 2008 Trouble Assets Relief Program (TARP) from hiring H-1B foreign … Continue Reading

While The Federal Government Remains Serious About Immigration Enforcement, Its “No-Match Letter” Program Remains In Limbo

Through increased fines and a proposed regulation defending its "no-match letter" program, the federal government continues to enforce the prohibition against illegal employment.  Earlier this year, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the Department of Justice (DOJ) increased civil fines for employers that violate immigration laws.  The increased penalties are the result of an … Continue Reading

U.S. Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit Gives Green Light to Employees Suing Mohawk Industries For Immigration Law Violations under RICO

The Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act (RICO) permits plaintiffs to act as private prosecutors and sue for injuries arising out of alleged conspiracies to commit specified types of felonies. In 1996, Congress amended RICO to add workplace immigration crimes to the list, including knowingly hiring 10 or more undocumented workers in a 12-month period. … Continue Reading

California Employers Threatened With New Waive of 17200 Suits

A new organization by the name of "" has established a website for reporting employers alleged to be engaged in the employment of unauthorized workers in California and elsewhere. The website describes the organization as a network of law firms, labor organizations, immigration reform advocates and others working to eliminate the incentive for illegal immigration. David Klehm, … Continue Reading

DHS Issues Proposed Rule Governing SSA No-Match Letters

Last year, the Social Security Administration issued "no-match" letters to approximately 120,000 employers nationwide, reporting non-matching social security account numbers relating to approximately 7.3 million employees. For privacy reasons, the letters do not identify the names of the employees to whom the numbers relate. The non-matching numbers are detected by SSA in processing W-2 forms filed annually … Continue Reading

Zamora v. Elite Logistics, Inc.:

Caution: Beware Overly Zealous Immigration Enforcement Employers concerned with potential immigration raids and fines should beware going too far in their efforts to terminate undocumented workers. As one Kansas employer recently learned, overzealous enforcement may pave the way to liability for back pay, compensatory damages and attorneys fees for unlawful discrimination on the basis of race … Continue Reading

Labor Through Contract Theory of Sanctions Liability

On May 8, 2006, Immigration and Customs Enforcement ("ICE") arrested 76 undocumented workers and 4 construction site managers at Fischer Homes, Inc. worksites in Kentucky. Fischer and its managers were charged criminally with harboring and transporting undocumented workers for financial gain. Tax investigators were also involved. On May 2, 2006, ICE carried a similar operation … Continue Reading

The Department Of Homeland Security Announces A New Get Tough Enforcement Policy Against Employers

On April 20, 2006, DHS Secretary Michael Chertoff announced a nationwide enforcement program directed at worksite enforcement of the employer sanctions laws, which prohibit employment of unauthorized foreign workers. This announcement comes against the backdrop of raids conducted on April 19, 2006, against IFCO Systems, Inc., a German-owned palleting firm, at locations in New York, … Continue Reading

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