Form I-9 Non-Compliance Leads to $600,000 Fine

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Written By ESR News Blog Editor Thomas Ahearn

A company was fined more than $600,000 after the Office of the Chief Administrative Hearing Officer (OCAHO) issued a decision finding the employer liable for more than 800 Form I-9 violations of hiring employees to work in the United States without properly examining and documenting their identity. The decision is at http://www.justice.gov/sites/default/files/pages/attachments/2015/07/15/1255.pdf.

In the decision of UNITED STATES OF AMERICA v. HARTMANN STUDIOS, INC., the defendant was found “liable for 808 violations of 8 U.S.C. § 1324a(a)(1)(B)” by failing to timely prepare and/or present a Form I-9 for hundreds of employees. The Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) originally requested $812,665.25 in civil penalties but the Judge in the case downgraded the financial penalty to $605,250.

This case is an action pursuant to the employer sanctions provisions of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) as amended by the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986 (IRCA). The IRCA requires all employers in the U.S. to examine documentation from newly hired employees using the Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification to prove their identity and eligibility to work in the United States.

At this case shows, employers need to be diligent about Form I-9 compliance. The E-Verify electronic employment eligibility system is an Internet-based program that compares information from the Form I-9 to data from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and Social Security Administration (SSA) records to confirm employment eligibility. To learn more, visit http://www.dhs.gov/e-verify/.

ESR Helps Employers with E-Verify and Form I-9 Compliance

Employment Screening Resources® (ESR) – ‘The Background Check Authority®’ – is a Designated E-Verify Employer Agent that helps employers with E-Verify and Form I-9 compliance. To contact ESR about E-Verify and Form I-9 services, call Toll Free 888.999.4474 or visit http://www.esrcheck.com/. The ESR Form I-9 and E-Verify webpage is at http://www.esrcheck.com/Services/Identity-Credit/I-9-E-Verify/.

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