In a much-publicized case, an I-9 audit of the Chipotle fast-casual restaurant chain in Minnesota resulted in the company's dismissing 450 employees as unverified workers. Subsequent to that, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officials carried out further audits of the Chipotle chain nationwide, including sites in Washington, D.C.

When the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) got wind of the Chipotle investigations, that agency launched its own probe since illegal immigration issues can affect shareholders' stakes in the company if not disclosed and/or dealt with properly by the parent.

Action by the SEC can further damage a company's reputation, to say nothing of adding compliance/documentation requirements.

All employers in the United States must complete and retain the Form I-9 for employees hired after the Immigration Reform and Control Act (IRCA) of 1986. As you can see from this example, failure to properly comply with verifying workers' right to work in the United States can have unforeseen repercussions.