Allows Workers To Identify Potential Issues

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced the launch of the E-Verify Self Check website on March 21, 2011. The E-Verify Self Check enables individuals in the United States to determine if the government’s records accurately reflect their own employment eligibility status before they seek employment. For now, the E-Verify Self Check is limited to persons who maintain an address and are physically located in the District of Columbia or one of the following states: Arizona, Colorado, Idaho, Mississippi or Virginia.

The web-based E-Verify system is a free and mostly voluntary employment eligibility verification program operated by USCIS in collaboration with the Social Security Administration (SSA). The program allows employers to verify the employment eligibility of newly-hired workers using information collected during completion of the I-9 Employment Eligibility Verification Form. E-Verify is mandatory for certain federal contractors. Individual states also have laws requiring some or all employers to use additional means of employment eligibility verification such as E-Verify.

While the general concept of allowing individuals the ability to check (and potentially correct) their employment eligibility status using the new E-Verify Self Check tool is viewed as favorable by most observers, some have cited concerns with data privacy, the possible lack of access for those without a sufficient financial/credit history, and the potential misuse of the system by employers (i.e., using the Self Check as a pre-employment screening tool).


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Ogletree Deakins has one of the largest business immigration practices in the United States and provides a wide range of legal services for employers seeking temporary business visas and permanent residence on behalf of foreign national employees.

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