Despite the united efforts of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce and politicians trolling for the future votes of (suddenly amnestied) illegal immigrants, the Department of Labor is implementing the Bush-era mandate for contractors to use E-Verify. Everything E-Verify (unless delayed again or even canceled) thus takes hold a week from today, on Sept. 8, 2009.

E-Verify is an online system that checks Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and Social Security Administration (SSA) databases to determine if a person is legally authorized to work in the United States. It is used in concert with the United States Customs and Immigration Services (USCIS) form I-9, which must be held by all employers for all their employees in the United States.

The much-delayed Bush regulation was assailed because it requires those with federal contracts of $100,000 or more (and subcontractors with contracts of $3,000 or more) to E-Verify all current and future employees.

The Chamber and others instituted legal proceedings, claiming that the E-Verify enabling legislation did not provide for mandated use. The U.S. District Court of Maryland, however, rejected all opposition claims and affirmatively categorized federal contracts as “voluntary,” so that E-Verify usage could be rejected by not applying for the contract (and thus its use could not be considered as mandated).

Ironically, several states have long required E-Verify usage, and businesses have learned to live with it.

Personnel Concepts has a comprehensive I-9 Compliance Kit that will help all employers, whether using E-Verify or not, to comply with federal employment verification laws.