How to Verify Immigration Status of Employees

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Employee Provides Background Information on Form I-9

The first step in verifying a new hire's eligibility to work in the states is to have him complete Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification. You are required by law to have a completed I-9 on file for each employee you hire, whether a U.S. citizen or noncitizen. Your employee must complete Section 1 of Form I-9 no later than his first date of employment, but not before he has accepted your job offer. He provides information such as his name, date of birth and whether he is a U.S. citizen. You, or your authorized representative, must complete Section 2 of this form within three business days of your employee's first workday. In that section, you note the identification the employee provided, such as a passport or a permanent resident card.

Employee Information Submitted to Government Database

Next, you submit the data to E-Verify, an online federal database, where the information is compared with data from the U.S. Department of State, Homeland Security and Social Security Administration. Using E-Verify is voluntary, unless your state requires you to do so. Other than work eligibility, E-Verify does not provide any additional immigration, citizenship or document information about the employee.

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About the Author

Based on the West Coast, Mary Jane Freeman has been writing professionally since 1994, specializing in the topics of business and law. Freeman's work has appeared in a variety of publications, including LegalZoom, Essence, Reuters and Chicago Sun-Times. Freeman holds a Master of Science in public policy and management and Juris Doctor. Freeman is self-employed and works as a policy analyst and legal consultant.

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