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Manufacturers Should Strengthen Compliance With I-9 Employment Eligibility Verification Requirements

January 24, 2020

Recent changes in U.S. immigration laws, regulations and executive orders, as well as more restrictive USCIS policies and adjudication trends, are making it more difficult, time-consuming and expensive for U.S. manufacturers to obtain U.S. work-authorized visas for needed unskilled and skilled foreign workers.

Faced with the Social Security Administration’s renewed issuance of Social Security number mismatch letters and the substantial uptick in ICE’s worksite investigations and enforcement activities geared to the use of heavy civil and criminal penalties, contract debarment, and prison sentences to curb unauthorized U.S. employment, an increasing number of U.S. manufacturers have voluntarily embraced the use of E-Verify as an additional step in their hiring process. Others are conducting vigorous internal audits of their Form I-9 Employment Eligibility Verification forms, devoting substantial time and effort to detecting and correcting any errors in the completion of these forms and training their hiring personnel on their completion.

Given such industry trends among competitors and the significant number of existing and potential manufacturing customers with state and federal contract obligations, we recommend manufacturers review and strengthen compliance with I-9 employment eligibility verification requirements with an eye toward demonstrating a good faith intention and effort to avoid the hire and retention of workers without proper U.S. work authorization.

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