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The long-expected E-Verify service for checking on the immigration status of employees and applicants is now up and running, having been delayed from the anticipated January implementation. Federal contractors are required to use the service to check the status of both current and potential employees. The program has been and will continue to be the subject of much debate and employers can expect further changes.

Contractors must enroll in the E-Verify program within 30 days of the award of a contract containing an E-Verify clause and have 90 days from the date of enrollment to verify the status of all new hires and all employees assigned to the contract. Subcontractors on such projects with a subcontract of $3,000 or more must also enroll and check their employees.

There are significant concerns that the system will report false “tentative negative confirmations.” Contractors are required to provide the concerned employee with information and assist any employee who wishes to challenge the determination in obtaining administrative review.

Frederick J. Northrop

May 3, 2010