Best Practices for I-9 Compliance to Ensure a Successful DHS Audit
Your company's I-9 compliance should be treated as sacred as its mission statement, corporate vision, employee handbook, or any other policy or procedure used to ensure the continued success of your business. Hiring ineligible or undocumented workers at your workplace could have grave affects on your business and its financial success. The Federal Immigration and Control Act (IRCA) of 1986 prohibits U.S. businesses from hiring unauthorized immigrants or ineligible workers and that is the bottom line. A Texas-based technology consulting and outsourcing company learned the hard way and recently settled for a record $34 million dollar civil lawsuit with the U.S. government for systemic visa fraud and abuse of the immigration processes. Think about a scenario when an Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officer from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) arrives at your business and detains several undocumented workers as part of a raid or even in a response to a routine Notice of Inspection (NOI). Could a significant loss of workforce put you out of business? In addition, DHS fines and penalties are significant and range anywhere from $375 to $16,000 per employee violation. Anyone with a pattern or practice of hiring, recruiting or referring unauthorized aliens can even be put in jail for 6 months.