NOTE FROM THE EDITOR: I am soooo happy I have colleagues like Eileen Scofield who love immigration law...so I don't have to. I don't even have to like it very much. In fact (just between us), I don't even have to understand it. Eileen does. And boy does she ever. Understand it, that is.
Here's what I mean. Eileen is a member of the AILA's (American Immigration Lawyers Association) National Verification & Documentation Liaison Committee and chairperson of the E-Verify National Liaison Committee, and recently wrote up a summary of executive level meetings she and her Committee had with the Obama administration's Department of Homeland Security to discuss immigration and verification issues. I tried really hard to follow it, but it is simply over my head.
But it's right up the alley of fellow immigration specialists (affectionately known as Immigration Geeks, or IGs), and so it is for all you IGs out there that this post is dedicated.
For the rest of us mortals, well, when faced with an immigration issue, I recommend you do what I do (after plugging my ears, closing my eyes, and saying "nah nah I can't hear you"): Call Eileen.
INTRO: Way back in 1986, with the passage of the Immigration Reform and Control Act (IRCA), employers were officially deputized as pseudo-immigration officers in the battle against illegal immigration, charged with screening and enforcing various immigration laws. Initially, this was through the use of the I-9 Employment Verification Form, whereby every employer was to verify the identity and work authorization of every new employee hired. However, not surprisingly, in the last 24 years, this process, and the related liability, has expanded and now includes other employer tools such as social security number verification processes (SSNVS), E-Verify processes, and more.
What follows is Eileen's summary of her Committee's discussions with the Department of Homeland Security, particularly as to those issues with the greatest impact on employers, including DHS search tools, E-Verify changes, and fines for I-9 violations. (MDY)