Friday, November 05, 2004

Employment Eligibility Verification & the Law

Many of our clients have asked what the government is doing to better enable employers to verify the work eligibility of applicants. Indeed, employers everywhere are interested in knowing for sure that the employees they hire are authorized to work in the United States. For some the concern reflects 9/11 and the potential for terrorists to infiltrate by gaining employment. For others the interest lies more in making sure their company is strictly complying.

First, let me begin by saying that any assistance or information provided by the Fed occurs on a post hire basis and not at the application phase of the hiring process. Having clarified that one point, I can tell you that unfortunately the program remains essentially the same now as it did prior to 9/11. The government still expects you to do the best job you can of reviewing employment documents at the point of hire. If you suspect some falsification or fraud in an employee's documentation you may still call the Fed for assistance. The Social Security Administration will still verify the information provided by your employee against the SSA database without much fuss, so long as you provide them with your EIN number. The INS (now the U.S.CIS) will also assist, but only in cases where fraud is suspected. I have known them to be reluctant to assist even under those circumstances, probably due to the high volume of calls they have received since 9/11.

There is one piece of good news though, and that is that President Bush has extended the SAVE program through November, 2008. The SAVE program allows employers in Texas and a select number of other states to verify the eligibility of new employees on-line. Employers can subscribe directly, or work through a designated agent such as Asset Control/ChooseToCare. Queries can be made on-line and hit up against a data base consisting of information from several government agencies, such as the Social Security Administration.

The SAVE program is currently available to employers in the states of California, Florida, Illinois, Nebraska, New York, and Texas. However, once an employer has signed up to participate in CA, FL, IL, NE, NY, or TX, they may elect to sign up other company hiring sites located outside of the Basic Pilot states. To find out more about the SAVE program and how Asset Control can act as your designated agent please call our offices at 940-891-1919.


Post a Comment

<< Home