E-Verify (Instant Verification of Employment Eligibility)
U.S. law requires companies to employ only individuals who may legally work in the United States – either U.S. citizens, or foreign citizens who have the necessary authorization. This diverse workforce contributes greatly to the vibrancy and strength of our economy, but that same strength also attracts unauthorized employment.
E-Verify is an Internet-based system operated by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) in partnership with the Social Security Administration (SSA) that allows businesses to determine the eligibility of their employees to work in the United States. E-Verify is the best way employers can ensure a legal workforce.
How Does E-Verify Affect me as an employee?
Federal law requires that all employers verify the identity and employment eligibility of all new employees (including U.S. citizens) within three days of hire. Employees are required to complete the Form I-9, and employees must provide employers with documentation establishing both identity and eligibility to work in the United States.
Through E-Verify, employers send information about you from your Form I-9 to Social Security Administration and Department of Homeland Security to ensure that you are authorized to work in the United States. E-Verify compares the information to records available to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, including:
- U.S. passport and visa information
- Immigration and naturalization records
- State -issued driver’s licenses and identity document information
- Social Security Administration records.
E-Verify sometimes displays a photo for the employer to compare to the photo on the employee’s document to ensure the document photo has not been altered.
If the information matches, the case will receive an Employment Authorized result almost immediately.
If the information does not match, the case will receive a Tentative Non-Confirmation result.
Know Your Rights
- Employers must post a notice informing employees of their use of E-verify.
- E-Verify must be used for new hires only. It cannot be used to verify the employment eligibility of current employees.
- E-Verify must be used for all new hires. It may not be used selectively based on national origin or citizenship status.
- E-Verify must be used only after hire and after completion of the Form I-9. Employers may not pre-screen applicants through E-Verify.
- If an employee receives an information mismatch from their Form I-9 and Social Security Administration and Department of Homeland Security databases, the employer must promptly provide the employee with information about how to challenge the information mismatch, including a written notice generated by E-Verify.
- If an employee decides to challenge the information mismatch, the employer must provide the person with a referral letter issued by E-Verify that contains specific instructions and contact information.
- Employers may not take any adverse action against an employee because he/she contests the information mismatch. This includes firing, suspending, withholding pay or training, or otherwise infringing upon his/her employment status or circumstances.
- The employee must be given eight federal government work days to contact the appropriate federal agency to contest the information mismatch.
- If an employee receives a Social Security Administration Tentative Non-Confirmation (TNC), they have the option of visiting a Social Security Administration field office to update their record. Or, if the employee is a naturalized citizen, the employee may choose to call USCIS directly to resolve the TNC. The phone number can be found on the Social Security Administration referral letter.