Annapolis I-9 Compliance Lawyer

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) requires employers to verify the eligibility of their employees to work in the United States. This requirement is strictly enforced, and employers who knowingly employ undocumented foreign nationals may face a variety of legal issues.

To verify the employment eligibility of a worker, employers are required to complete and submit I-9 forms within three days of hiring a worker. This form must contain the personal information of an employee, including their Social Security number, name, and current address, and it will be checked against the information stored in a national electronic database.

If you have questions or concerns about I-9 forms or employment verification, it may be wise to contact an Annapolis I-9 compliance lawyer. A hard-working attorney can provide you with the professional assistance necessary for submitting a successful I-9 form.

Hiring Authorized Foreign Nationals

Employers are legally allowed to sponsor an employee for a Green Card. To do this, they must first apply for a Labor Certification on behalf of the individual they wish to employ. Sponsoring a foreign employee is possible, but it is also time-consuming and the process can be complex.

Before the government allows a foreign worker to live in the United States, their employer must prove there are no U.S. workers capable of filling the position the worker is being hired for. To prove there is a shortage of skilled workers, an employer must obtain a Labor Certification by proving they publicly advertised and interviewed for the job. This must have been done within a reasonable amount of time prior to hiring the foreign national.

Individuals in certain professions may not need to comply with the Labor Certification requirements. Foreign nationals with advanced degrees, accomplished careers, and extraordinary abilities may not be subject to the Labor Certification requirements.

Penalties for Hiring Unauthorized Workers

As previously stated, failure to comply with I-9 requirements can have extensive consequences for employers. Employers who knowingly hire unauthorized workers may be subject to fines, and in the most extreme cases, criminal charges and imprisonment. Any employer who hires unauthorized workers may be fined between $375 and $16,000 per violation, and those who violate I-9 requirements multiple times will receive higher fines.

There are also fines simply for failing to file an I-9 form in a timely manner. These penalties range from $110 to $1,100 for each violation. Businesses who employ foreign nationals may also be subject to government audits to ensure I-9 compliance. Companies facing an audit may need the assistance of an Annapolis I-9 compliance lawyer.

Using E-Verify

Employers must submit I-9s forms for all workers within three days of their hiring. Companies must retain all I-9 forms for at least one year after an employer leaves or three years from the date of hire. Employers may confirm I-9 information using E-Verify, a free electronic internet database compiled by the Social Security Administration and DHS. Using E-Verify is not required for most businesses (although it greatly simplifies the verification process), but employers with federal contracts and subcontracts must use E-Verify.

Despite the fact that the use of E-Verify is currently voluntary, many states are now introducing legislation in the future that will require all businesses to use E-Verify when hiring employees.

Reach Out to an Annapolis I-9 Compliance Attorney Today

Verifying I-9 information may seem simple, but things can go wrong. If you are unsure of how to verify the information provided by a potential employee or you are being audited by the government, you may need legal assistance. A skilled attorney may be able to help you avoid hefty fines and possible criminal charges.

Reach out to an Annapolis I-9 compliance lawyer to discuss your situation today.

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