The number of Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) I-9 audits are on the rise. These audits verify that employees are authorized to work in the United States. Those close to the hiring processes in the U.S. know the importance of inspecting documentation and retaining records for I-9 purposes.
SHRM Online Editor, Roy Maurer, states, "Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) wants employers to understand that, going forward, the agency will increase Form I-9 audits, conduct more worksite raids and promote involvement in the government's voluntary compliance program."
How Can Employers Prevent Employing Illegal Workers?
As you can imagine, this topic is very relevant in the world of staffing. Recruiting firms employ many workers and assist several employers in doing the same. Some organizations partner with staffing agencies specifically for I-9 expertise. Many of these organizations are practicing caution or require additional partnership due to lean HR support. The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) offers several best practices and resources on this topic for employers. Not to mention, there's a variety of online resources through U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). Below are tips for those that have oversight in the I-9 process.
1. Provide ongoing I-9 training and resources to individuals collecting, reviewing, and maintaining I-9 documentation.
Often, someone becomes an I-9 expert. What happens if this person leaves the organization? Also, routinely revisiting the topic allows for processes to be tweaked, updates to be made, and knowledge to be learned or refreshed.
2. Thoroughly examine I-9 documentation using the standard of "reasonableness." Tips are provided HERE.
Never sacrifice your reasonable standards. Turning away potential employees may be hard, especially in a hiring crunch! However, always give your examination process the time and attention it deserves.
3. Establish an internal I-9 storage and audit process.
Process and procedure may take time to create and perfect but are well worth it in the end. Your process should allow an I-9 audit to occur seamlessly without derailing your day-to-day activities.
Additional I-9 Resources for Employers:
Counterfeit documents exist, so the federal government provides free programs designed to help prevent the employment of illegal workers. The two most common programs are below:
This service is used to verify that an employee's name and Social Security number match Social Security's records.
This service is used to match an employee's Form I-9 against records available to the Social Security Administration and the Department of Homeland Security.
We hope these resources help employers. If you have any additional tips, please don't hesitate to let us know!
As a trusted recruitment source for more than 15 years, recruiters at TruPath have a customizable process that helps our partners feel comfortable in their search for a candidate. Contact TruPath today to tell us about your staffing needs.