Employers Get Help on National Security Regulations

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Info Cubic using electronic verification of I-9 Employment Eligibility Status. Employers these days are on the front line in the battle to fight national security risks posed by illegal immigration. At the heart of the issue are federal Immigration Reform and Control Act (IRCA) rules requiring employers to make sure job applicants don't use false documents to obtain or retain employment.

This not only helps protect employers from potential penalties, but it serves a legitimate national-security function.

Guidelines for employers to address national security issues posed by illegal immigration just got a little easier, according to Justin Den, chief executive officer of Info Cubic, an international pre-employment screening company based in Colorado.

At the heart of the issue are federal Immigration Reform and Control Act (IRCA) rules requiring employers to make sure job applicants don't use false documents to obtain or retain employment.

Consequences for both large and small companies not following the often-changing IRCA rules and regulations can be substantial, Den said, with employers facing prison terms and fines as high as $3,000 per unauthorized employee.

Fortunately, both the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the Social Security Administration (SSA) have agreed to an instant I-9 Employment Verification System that allows employers to quickly and inexpensively check the accuracy of Social Security, Immigration "A" and I-94 Arrival/Departure numbers. A special DHS number is then issued to confirm a person's work-eligibility status.

"Companies can keep this number on file as proof they have complied with immigration laws," Den said. "This not only helps protect employers from potential penalties, but it serves a legitimate national-security function."

Den notes the I-9 process is designed to prevent the possibility of a terrorist obtaining access to critical infrastructure systems, such as power plants or water treatment facilities, through their employment. It also helps provide a barrier to industrial espionage, where an illegal employee could become privy to sensitive information and technologies.

"I-9 compliance can get a bit complicated," Den said. "With individual states issuing their own guidelines, a company operating nationally or regionally can face conflicting rules and regulations depending on where their workers or contracted employees are operating. That's why it's extremely helpful to partner with a professional employment screening business to ensure compliance and avoid sanctions."

In addition, work eligibility is often dependent upon time-sensitive documents that must be diligently tracked to assure they have not expired. In the past, many employer I-9 violations were attributable to paper forms that were improperly filled out, filed and forgotten or simply lost.

However, I-9 compliance has recently become easier with the creation of an electronic "E-Verify" system developed in cooperation with the DHS, SSA and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). The online national database vastly simplifies an employer's ability to check the employment-eligibility status of job applicants while increasing the government's ability to hold employers accountable for the workers they hire.

Info Cubic is a full-service pre-employment screening company that is one of the first in its industry to offer an instant I-9 Form verification. Info Cubic has been a leading provider of employment background checks since 2001. For more information about the I-9 Employment Verification System, contact Geoffrey Jensen at (877) 360-4636 or visit http://www.infocubic.net.

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Geoffrey Jensen
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