E-Verify Resumes Operations after Partial Government Shutdown Ends

E-Verify Resumes Operations after Partial Government Shutdown Ends

Written By ESR News Blog Editor Thomas Ahearn

The E-Verify electronic employment eligibility verification service has resumed operations after being unavailable for over a month due to a lapse in federal funding for the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) that caused the longest United States federal government shutdown in history that lasted from December 22, 2018, to January 25, 2019, according to a notice on the E-Verify website.

E-Verify Employment Eligibility Verification Resumes Operations

E-Verify is a web-based system that allows employers to confirm the identity and employment eligibility of newly hired employees to work in the United States by electronically matching information provided by employees on the ‘Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification’ against records available to the DHS and the Social Security Administration (SSA).

Even though Form I-9 support representatives were unavailable during the lapse in government appropriations and E-Verify service was disrupted, employers were still required to complete and retain the ‘Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification’ for every person hired for employment in the U.S. during that time, as long as the person works for wages or other remuneration.

Now that E-Verify operations have resumed, employers who participate in E-Verify must create an E-Verify case by February 11, 2019, for each employee hired while E-Verify was not available. If the case creation date is more than three days following the date the employee began working for pay, select “Other” from the drop-down list and enter “E-Verify Not Available” as the specific reason.

If an employee received a Tentative Nonconfirmation (TNC) and intended to contest the TNC by February 11, 2019, the employer must revise the date by which the employee must contact the SSA or DHS to resolve the TNC by adding ten (10) federal business days to the date on the employee’s “Referral Date Confirmation” notice and giving the revised notice to the employee.

During the DHS lapse in appropriations, E-Verify was not available for federal contractor enrollment or use. As a result, DHS guidance is that any calendar day during which E-Verify was unavailable due to the lapse in appropriations should not count towards the federal contractor deadlines found in the Employment Eligibility Verification Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR).

For any questions or additional information about the unavailability of E-Verify, email e-verify@dhs.gov. For questions about Form I-9, visit I-9 Central or email I-9central@dhs.gov. Employers and employees may also contact E-Verify at 888-464-4218 Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Eastern Time. For more information, visit www.e-verify.gov/e-verify-resumes-operation/.

A federal government shutdown in the United States occurs when Congress and the President fail to pass appropriations legislation funding government operations and agencies. Since 1976, there have been federal government shutdowns in 1980, 1981, 1984, 1986, 1990, 1995-1996, and 2013. There were three government shutdowns in 2018, in January, February, and December-January 2019.

ESR is a Designated E-Verify Employer Agent

Employment Screening Resources® (ESR) – a leading global provider of background checks – is not a typical background screening firm and does not intend to become one. ESR is also a Designated E-Verify Employer Agent that helps employers with Form I-9 and E-Verify compliance. To learn more about Form I-9 and E-Verify services from ESR, visit www.esrcheck.com/Background-Checks/Form-I-9-E-Verify/.

NOTE: Employment Screening Resources® (ESR) does not provide or offer legal services or legal advice of any kind or nature. Any information on this website is for educational purposes only.

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