Monday, October 3, 2011

E-Verify in the News: The Legal Workforce Act

The Legal Workforce Act was introduced by Texas Congressman, Lamar Smith, in June 2011.  Since that time, it has been gaining support and spurring a controversy. 

As Chairman Smith states in his E-Verify fact sheet for the act:  "There is no other legislation that can be enacted that will create more jobs for American workers."

Chairman Smith's fact sheet also states:

Twenty-four million Americans want a full time job, but can’t find one.  Of these, 19 million
are Americans without a college degree who compete most directly with unskilled illegal
immigrant workers.  And according to the Pew Hispanic Center, seven million people are
working in this country illegally.  These U.S. jobs should go to legal workers. 

E-Verify, currently a voluntary program, quickly identifies those working illegally. 
Making it mandatory for all employers will open up more jobs for Americans and legal
immigrants.  It is an electronic employment eligibility verification system available free online. 
Social Security numbers and immigrant identification numbers of new hires are checked
against SSA and DHS databases to help determine work eligibility.

 Nearly 290,000 businesses currently use E-Verify and 1,300 new businesses sign up each

Persons eligible to work receive immediate confirmation 99.5% of the time. 

The American public has consistently supported E-Verify.  A May 2011, Rasmussen poll
found that 82% of likely voters “think businesses should be required to use the federal
government’s E-Verify system to determine if a potential employee is in the country
legally.”  And the breakdown of the Rasmussen poll shows that individuals from all races and
political affiliations support the use of E-Verify.  In fact 78% percent of African-Americans
agreed, 72% of other minorities agreed, 73% of Democrats agreed and 85% of
“moderates” agreed.

And it looks like E-Verify is being fast tracked to be launched across the nation.

According to, "It just got to Washington state, but its already on a fast track for the whole nation – and all business owners."

According to an article by the Orange County Register, "Supporters say the measure would push illegal immigrants from the workforce and reclaim those jobs for Americans or legal residents while leveling the playing field.  Opponents say the program would saddle small business owners with additional burdens".

Some note that in the aftermath of the Chipotle audits that resulted in 1/3 of their Minnesota workforce being terminated, hundreds of Americans lined up to take the jobs once held by illegal workers.

We fully expect that E-Verify will become mandatory for all U.S. employers in the not too distant future.

If you would like more information on E-Verify, I-9s, or immigration compliance, please contact Form I-9 Compliance at 949-640-4949,, or

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