Mandatory Nationwide Use of E-Verify Included in White House Budget for DHS

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Written By ESR News Blog Editor Thomas Ahearn

The White House Fiscal Year (FY) 2018 Budget that requests $44.1 billion for the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) also calls for “expanding worksite enforcement strategies by mandating nationwide use of the E-Verify system” to reduce illegal employment, according to the DHS FY 2018 Budget in Brief.

The DHS FY 2018 Budget in Brief requests: $131.5 million for E-Verify operations and upgrades for U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), including new investments to expand the E-Verify program. The purpose of expanding E-Verify is to support mandatory use of E-Verify nationwide within three years.

E-Verify is an Internet-based system that compares information from the Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification of newly hired employees to data from DHS, the Social Security Administration (SSA), and State Department of Motor Vehicle (DMV) records to confirm employment eligibility.

The DHS Budget in Brief states the USCIS – which manages the E-Verify program – added approximately 61,000 additional employers to the E-Verify program to grow to more than 678,000 employers at the end of FY 2016, with an average of more than 1,300 new employers joining each week.

The USCIS – the government agency overseeing lawful immigration to the United States – also saw the number of employee work authorization verification requests processed grow to more than 34 million in FY 2016. Modernization efforts to increase the effectiveness and efficiency of E-Verify included:

  • Strengthened the IT infrastructure to improve scalability and availability;
  • Rebuilt the Status Verification System (SVS) to speed up case processing, adapt to growing workload volumes, and promote overall system efficiency;
  • Increased accuracy of data by improving algorithms for automated verification, thereby returning immediate responses to employers, and reducing manual processing; and
  • Rebuilt the employer onboarding function to make it easier for employers to function to make it easier for employers to sign up for the E-Verify service.

Part of the $131.5 million requested for E-Verify in the FY 2018 Budget includes an increase of $15.2 million E-Verify from FY 2017 to 2018 to support nationwide mandatory use of the E-Verify system. Here are highlights included in the DHS Budget in Brief at www.dhs.gov/publication/fy-2018-budget-brief/:

  • In FY 2018, USCIS will continue to modernize the Verification Information System – the underlying technology that supports E-Verify – for future expansion and to reduce the burden on employers and employees.
  • USCIS will also look to expand access to new data sources, which will enhance E-Verify’s ability to quickly and accurately determine an individual’s immigration status and employment eligibility.
  • USCIS will continue to leverage partnerships with State DMVs in an effort to prevent identity fraud in E-Verify, by verifying the authenticity of drivers’ licenses with the issuing State.
  • Finally, USCIS will increase the use of E-Verify fraud and misuse detection tools.

As reported earlier by ESR News, the White House released its FY 2018 Budget Blueprint in March 2017 that called for investing $15 million to begin implementation of mandatory nationwide use of the E-Verify program as part of the $44.1 billion net discretionary budget for the DHS.

ESR Helps Employers with E-Verify Compliance

Employment Screening Resources® (ESR) – a global background check firm– is also a Designated E-Verify Employer Agent that helps employers with E-Verify compliance. For more information about ESR, please visit www.esrcheck.com. Visit ESR on social media at FacebookTwitter, and LinkedIn.

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