On Mar 09 2010

ICE Issues More Notices of Inspection

Last week, Immigration & Customs Enforcement (ICE) issued a press release stating that it will send another 180 Notices of Inspection (NOIs) to businesses in Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, Arkansas and Tennessee.

The notices alert the employers that ICE will be coming to their workplace to inspect I-9 records.  This marks another round of inspections by ICE, which in 2009 issued 1000 NOIs to employers around the country.  Acting special agent in charge of the ICE Office of Investigations in New Orleans, Raymond R. Parmer, Jr., stated that “ICE is committed to establishing a meaningful I-9 inspection program to promote compliance with the law.  This effort is a first step in ICE’s long-term strategy to address and deter illegal employment.”

Employers around the country should expect ICE to issue more NOIs throughout 2010.  As ICE explained, in 2009 it “implemented a new, comprehensive strategy to reduce the demand for illegal employment and protect employment opportunities for the nation’s lawful workforce.  Under this strategy, ICE is focusing its resources on the auditing and investigation of employers suspected of cultivating illegal workplaces by knowingly employing illegal workers.”

Klasko reminds employers that it is critical to keep accurate I-9 records.  Form I-9 requires employers to determine the employment authorization of hires by reviewing and recording the employee’s identity documents and determining whether the documents reasonably appear to be genuine and related to the individual.  Employers are required to maintain an original Form I-9 and supporting documentation for all current employees.  Employers also must retain an I-9 file for at least 3 years from the employee’s hire date, or 1 year after the employee’s termination date, whichever is longer.