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Posts Tagged ‘eligibility’

No E-Verify During The U.S. Government Shutdown – What Is An Employer To Do?

Posted on: January 4th, 2019

By: Kenneth Levine

The current government shutdown has ensnared the E-Verify system, which is used by numerous U.S. employers to verify the employment eligibility of new hires. While many operations of DHS and USCIS are maintained through user fees, and therefore unaffected by the shutdown, this does not apply to the E-Verify system. Functions on the E-Verify website which provide valuable information to U.S. employers, such as webinars, myE-Verify accounts, Form I-9 and E-Verify telephone support, are currently unavailable. Only basic E-Verify guidance remains accessible.

Employers that utilize E-Verify should know that the current unavailability of the system does not mean that employee hiring decisions must be delayed. DHS has posted a link to the E-Verify website which provides guidance on how U.S. employer’s should proceed with hiring during the pendency of the government shutdown. In particular, the notice addresses the “three day rule” as follows:

  • The “three-day rule” for creating E-Verify cases is suspended for cases affected by the unavailability of E-Verify.
  • The time period during which employees may resolve “tentative nonconfirmations” (TNCs) will be extended. The number of days E-Verify is not available will not count toward the days the employee has to begin the process of resolving their TNCs.
  • USCIS and DHS will provide additional guidance regarding “three-day rule” and time period to resolve TNCs deadlines once operations resume.
  • Employers may not take adverse action against an employee because the E-Verify case is in an interim case status, including while the employee’s case is in an extended interim case status due to the unavailability of E-Verify.
  • Federal contractors with the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) E-Verify clause should contact their contracting officer to inquire about extending federal contractor deadlines.

Despite the lack of accessibility to the E-Verify system, USCIS and DHS have made it crystal clear that employers engaged in hiring during the government shutdown must continue to comply with the I-9 employment verification process. Per the E-Verify website notice:

“The lapse in government appropriations does not affect Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification requirements. Employers must still complete Form I-9 no later than the third business day after an employee starts work for pay, and comply with all other Form I-9 requirements outlined in the Handbook for Employers (M-274) and on I-9 Central.”

FMG Immigration Attorneys will continue to monitor E-Verify developments and provide updates as needed.

For additional information related to this topic and for advice regarding how to navigate U.S. immigration laws you may contact Kenneth Levine of the law firm of Freeman, Mathis & Gary, LLP at (770-551-2700) or [email protected].

DOL Issues Final Rule Implementing FMLA Expansions for Military Caregivers and Airline Flight Crew Employees

Posted on: February 6th, 2013

By: La’Vonda McLean

On February 5, 2013, the Department of Labor (“DOL”) issued its Final Rule implementing statutory amendments to the FMLA regarding leave for military caregivers and airline flight crews.  These statutory changes incorporate amendments made by the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2010 (“FY 2010 NDAA”) and the Airline Flight Crew Technical Corrections Act (“AFCTCA”).  The final rule also clarifies changes regarding the calculation of intermittent or reduced schedule leave.

Before the FY 2010 NDAA was enacted, military caregiver leave was limited to eligible employees who were the family members of current service-members with a serious injury or illness incurred in the line of duty on active duty.  The DOL’s Final Rule, however, expands military caregiver leave to eligible employees who are family members of certain veterans with a serious injury or illness incurred or aggravated in the line of duty on active duty and that manifested before or after the veteran left active duty.

The Final Rule expands the definition of serious injury or illness for a current service-member to include preexisting conditions that were aggravated by service in the line of duty on active duty.  The Final Rule also expands qualifying exigency leave to eligible employees with a spouse, son, daughter, or parent in the Regular Armed Forces.  Before the Final Rule, a qualifying exigency only included members of the National Guard and Reserves.

The DOL’s Final Rule also amends the regulations to implement the AFCTCA.  The AFCTCA established a special minimum hours of service eligibility requirement for airline flight crew-members and flight attendants that reflect the unique scheduling requirements of the airline industry.  The Final Rule modifies the FMLA’s existing rules so that airline flight crew-members and flight attendants are better able to qualify for coverage under the FMLA based on the hours of service eligibility requirement.

The DOL’s announcement is available here.

Upcoming Changes to Form I-9 for Employment Eligibility

Posted on: October 12th, 2012

By: Kelly Morrison

United States is once again proposing changes to the standard I-9 eligibility form.  The commentary period on the amended form is open until October 15, 2012, at which time USCIS will evaluate suggestions and issue an implementation date for the new form.