E-Verify is mandatory for some employers, including federal contractors and subcontractors working on certain types of contracts, as well as employers in states where E-Verify may be required by state law. However, many employers who are not required to use E-Verify choose to do so voluntarily.

Mandatory E-Verify Usage

Requirements for Federal Contractors

The E-Verify Federal Contractor Rule applies to federal contractors awarded a new contract that has the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) E-Verify clause (48 C.F.R., Subpart 22.18) on September 8, 2009 or later in the following situations:
•The performance period for the contract is at least 120 days
•The contract is valued at more than $150,000
•At least some of the contract work is performed in the United States

Additionally, in some cases, the FAR E-Verify clause may be added to federal contracts and Indefinite-Delivery/Indefinite-Quantity (IDIQ) contracts that were in effect prior to this date.

Requirements for Federal Subcontractors

Subcontractors working on a pre contract that has the FAR E-Verify clause must participate in E-Verify in the following situations.

•The contract is for construction, commercial services or non-commercial services

•The subcontractor will perform at least $3,000 of work

•At least some of the contract work is performed in the United States

•Some states require all employers use E-Verify. As of May of 2015 (according to LawLogix.com), the only states with this requirement are Alabama, Arizona, Mississippi and South Carolina.

•There are a few other states (three as of May of 2015 per LawLogix.com) that require E-Verify for all employers with more than a certain number of employees.
◦All Georgia employerswith more than 10 employees
◦All Utah employers with more than 15 employees
◦All North Carolina employers with more than 25 employees must use E-verify.

•Many other states require E-Verify for public sector employers and/or state contractors.

State-Specific Requirements

State-specific details are available at LawLogix.com, though keep in mind that states may enact new requirements at any time. Verify your obligation with legal counsel to be certain.

Voluntary E-Verify Usage

It is not unusual for employers that are not obligated to participate in E-Verify to choose to do so anyway. There are some key benefits, including:

•E-Verify is a powerful tool for protecting employers against making a “knowing hire” of undocumented workers if the system is used in good faith, and it helps prevent – or at least reduce the likelihood of – documentation fraud.

•Additionally, because information from I-9 forms is used to process E-Verify, using the system often brings to light errors that are being made with I-9 documentation. Becoming aware of such problems and fixing them can help employers avoid costly fines in the event of an I-9 audit.

Using E-Verify

Whether you are using E-verify because you have to or because your company has decided to voluntarily implement the system, rest assured that it is very simple to use. It’s also free – there is no cost for using E-Verify. It does take a little time to process new hires through the online system, but the procedure is simple and straightforward.