Posted in employment checks
E-Verify is an online system that compares information from the I-9 form to Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Social Security Administration (SSA), and Department of State (DOS) records to confirm that a job applicant is authorized to work in the United States.
Currently, there are more than half a million employers nationwide using E-Verify. Business owners and hiring managers across the country are benefiting from the convenience of checking employment eligibility against government records, online.
There are a number of questions that are asked time and again about the process and how it can work for their business. We’ve curated the top 5 questions employers like you have about the E-Verify process into this one blog post.
Take a look – we hope it helps.
1. Can I conduct my E-Verify directly through E-Verify?
Yes. An employer can complete E-Verify directly through E-Verify’s website, or they may opt to use an E-Verify Employer Agent (EEA) such as MYB.
2. How is E-Verify different from the Social Security Number Verification Service?
E-Verify confirms the employment eligibility of newly hired employees. The Social Security Administration’s program verifies that a name matches a Social Security number (SSN). A person in the United States may have a valid SSN but not be authorized to work in the United States.
3. Is my company required to create E-Verify cases for its interns and unpaid employees?
You may only create an E-Verify case for an employee who receives payment or remuneration and for whom you complete a Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification. An intern may be considered a paid employee if he or she receives payment or anything of value, which could include free or reduced housing, meals, and/or other benefits.
4. Do I need to create a case in E-Verify if my company rehires an employee?
If you rehire a former employee within three years of his or her previous hire date, you may rely on the information on his or her previous Form I-9.
If you rehire an employee for whom you never created an E-Verify case and the employee’s previous Form I-9 lists an expired identity document, then you must complete a new Form I-9 and create a case for the employee in E-Verify.
If you rehire an employee for whom you created an E-Verify case and the employee’s previous Form I-9 lists an expired identity document, then you may either:
- Complete Section 3 of the employee’s previous Form I-9 and not create a new case for the employee in E-Verify or
- Complete a new Form I-9 for the employee and create a new case for the employee in E-Verify
5. My employee applied for a Social Security number (SSN) but has not yet received it. What should I do?
A case cannot be created in E-Verify without a Social Security number. If a newly hired employee has applied for but has not yet received his or her Social Security number (i.e., if he or she is a newly arrived immigrant), make a note on the employee’s Form I-9 and set it aside. The employee must be allowed to continue to work. Once the employee receives a Social Security number, you must create a case in E-Verify using the employee’s Social Security number as soon as the Social Security number is available.
For more tips and information for E-Verify, check out our previous blog posts on the topic. If you’d like to discuss how E-Verify may affect your business and hiring processes, contact our customer service team and we’ll be happy to help.
Posted in credit checks
The Federal Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) is designed to protect individuals by promoting accuracy, fairness, and privacy of information in the files of every Consumer Reporting Agency (CRA).
Most CRAs are credit bureaus that gather and provide information about individuals – such as if they pay their bills on time or have filed bankruptcy – to creditors, employers, and landlords.
When credit checks are considered in employment screening, employers must perform FCRA compliant background checks and adhere to the boundaries with which they can use a person’s credit history when making a hiring decision.
Most employers are aware of the federal FCRA regulations that they must follow during hiring procedures. It’s important to note, however, that many states have also passed their own FCRA laws. Understanding and abiding by both federal and state FCRA regulations has become an important skill for hiring managers.
Federal FCRA Regulations
To stay within federal FCRA guidelines, employers must adhere to three primary tenets:
- Applicant consent and authorization to a background check. Employers must disclose that they will be screening and applicants must give consent to the screening.
- Summary of Rights. Candidates must be given “A Summary of your Rights under the Fair Credit Reporting Act” document.
- Adverse Action Procedures. Adverse action includes pre-adverse action when the employer is considering a negative action (no hire, termination or no promotion) based on the results of the background check. The applicant will then have time to review and dispute the report.
These are standard processes now that almost all businesses are aware of and (most) abide by. When it gets to state, however, is when it gets more complex…
State FCRA Regulations
Is your business located in any of the following states?
Alaska, Arkansas, California, Colorado, District of Columbia, Kansas, Kentucky, Maryland, Massachusetts, Montana, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Mexico, New York, Texas, Washington
If so, in addition to the FCRA regulations above, your state has also enacted its own legislation and placed state-level limitations on what information can and cannot be reported.
Here’s a full PDF on state-level regulations. Take a look and what your state FCRA limitations include.
Sound complex? We know how you feel – it is!
This is a very high-level overview of how the FCRA may impact your hiring processes – and a couple of key areas to educate yourself on as you get started. If you’re looking for an experienced partner to help, we’d love to hear from you.
Posted in background checks
Uber has agreed to pay $7.5 million to end proposed class actions accusing the ride-hailing company of violating the Fair Credit Reporting Act. The lawsuit claims that Uber used background checks on drivers without applicants’ knowledge or authorization to make hiring decisions.
Under the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA), a federal law that regulates background checks in the U.S., employers using third-party background check firms are required to give prior notice and disclosure to, and receive written consent from, subjects of background checks.
This is not the first background check lawsuit Uber have faced. In fact, they’ve paid out tens of millions of dollars over the last few years.
In February, the company said it will pay $28.5 million to resolve claims it misled consumers about its “safe rides fee” and the quality of its driver background checks.
In April, a similar suit filed by Los Angeles and San Francisco counties was settled for $10 million, with Uber promising to pay an additional $15 million if it doesn’t meet the terms of the settlement over the next two years.
Later that month, Uber Inc. said it settled two closely watched class actions with its drivers in California and Massachusetts for as much as $100 million, agreeing that the drivers will remain classified as independent contractors rather than employees.
If approved, this deal would end consolidated claims brought by drivers who had their accounts deactivated or were denied employment due to the results of background checks that they didn’t receive advance notice of or otherwise authorize.
Posted in employment
Earlier this year, CareerBuilder commissioned a study of 2,186 hiring and human resource managers across the country to identify the biggest workplace productivity killers.
We reviewed the data and wanted to pass it on. While everyone needs a break at work and can’t be expected to maintain a laser-like focus at all times, there’s often room for improvement.
This research is a fantastic insight for employers and hiring managers to have, to help create a more effective and productive work environment.
Per the survey, here are the top 10 workplace productivity killers – designed into a fantastic infographic by CareerBuilder.
For those that prefer print, here’s the list in text format:
- Cell phone/texting (55%)
- The internet (41%)
- Gossip (39%)
- Social media (37%)
- Coworkers dropping by (27%)
- Smoke/snack breaks (27%)
- Email (26%)
- Meetings (24%)
- Noisy Coworkers (20%)
- Cubicles (9%)
You can read more about the research here: http://advice.careerbuilder.com/posts/from-cell-phones-to-noisy-coworkers-top-10-productivity-killers
Posted in Department of Labor
The U.S. Department of Labor has published new sex discrimination regulations that update the department’s interpretation of Executive Order 11246.
This is the first update in 40 years and holds the aim to better reflect the current state of the law and the reality of a modern and diverse workforce.
Updated rules on workplace sex discrimination will mean clarity for federal contractors and subcontractors and equal opportunities for both men and women applying for jobs with, or already working for, these employers.
“We have made progress as a country in opening career opportunities for women that were, for decades, the province of men. Yet, there is more work that lies ahead to eradicate sex discrimination. This is why it is important that we bring these old guidelines from the ‘Mad Men’ era to the modern era, and align them with the realities of today’s workplaces and legal landscape,” said director of the Office of Federal Contract Compliance Programs Patricia A. Shiu.
The update will make explicit the protections against compensation discrimination; sexually hostile work environments; discrimination based on pregnancy, childbirth or related medical conditions; and discrimination based on unlawful sex stereotypes, gender identity, and transgender status. The regulations also promote fair pay practices.
OFCCP will publish the final rule in an upcoming edition of the Federal Register.
Posted in ban the box
Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards has signed House Bill 266 (HB266) into law.
HB266 prevents state employers from asking applicants about criminal history in the application phase, so they may explain such records during the interview. However, the ban the box law allows employers to ask about criminal history during interviews and perform criminal background checks on applicants.
This new legislation will take effect August 1, 2016.
The National Employment Law Project estimates 70 million American adults have arrests or convictions in their past that can make it difficult for them to obtain employment. The ban the box movement has set out to give this segment a better chance or reintegration and employment by limiting what employers can ask job applicants during the application process.
According to a study released in February by the Alliance for a Just Society, Louisiana puts the most restrictions in the nation on employment for felons. The state has 389 legal restrictions in place that could affect a felons ability to get a job; the national average is 123. While some restrictions are necessary, over-regulating what ex-inmates can do to make a living isn’t smart.
In a major push to reform federal employment policies last year, President Obama signed an Executive Order that would prohibit federal employers from asking job applicants questions about potential criminal records until significantly later in the hiring process.
“Ban the box” policies have now been implemented in some form in 21 states across the country. Take a look at our full reporting on the ban the box movement.
Posted in drug testing
YouGov’s latest research shows that most Americans (59%) say that employers should be able to test any employee for past drug use.
27% say that they should only be able to test workers whose drug use is relevant to the role, such as operators of heavy machinery, while 13% say that drug tests should only be allowed after an incident. Support for drug testing is widespread, with most Democrats (51%) and Republicans (77%) agreeing.
Marijuana is the most common reason for someone to fail a drug test. This is not only because marijuana is by far the most commonly used illegal drug in America, but also because detectable traces of marijuana remain in a person’s body for weeks after use, while traces of drugs such as cocaine and heroin disappear in a matter of days.
When it comes to the safety of your workplace and the employees that work with you, it’s vital to have a program for drug testing at work in place. Judging by the fact that there are 23.9 million Americans that currently use drugs, there’s simply no room for risk.
If you’re considering starting a drug testing program at your workplace, be aware of the fact that there are a few key mistakes that many employers make. Take a look - and contact our team if you have any questions.
Posted in ban the box
Earlier this month, Connecticut signed new ban the box legislation into law.
As of January 1, 2017, most employers in Connecticut with one or more employees will be prohibited from requiring job seekers to disclose any criminal history (such as prior arrests, criminal charges, or convictions) on initial job applications.
There are two scenarios where employers will be permitted to perform checks: (1) when the employer is required to do so by an applicable state or federal law, or (2) when a security or fidelity bond or an equivalent bond is required for the position for which the prospective employee is seeking employment.
The law also establishes a “fair chance employment task force” to study issues that include employment opportunities available to ex-offenders and allows people to file a complaint with the Labor Commissioner alleging an employer’s violation of this law.
The task force is required to submit a report on its findings and offer recommendations for any administrative or legislative action by January 1, 2017.
Connecticut joins a long list of states that have enacted ban the box laws, including: California, Colorado, Delaware, Georgia, Hawaii, Illinois, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, New Jersey, New Mexico, Ohio, Oregon, Rhode Island, Vermont, and Virginia. Additionally, 100+ cities in the US have joined the movement.
NELP’s Ban the Box State and Local Guide documents the policies across the country.
Posted in Department of Labor
Earlier this month, The U.S. Department of Labor announced the award of $10.4 million in ApprenticeshipUSA State Accelerator Grants to expand and expedite registered apprenticeship programs nationwide.
The grants – awarded to 51 states and territories, and the District of Columbia – are part of $90 million in funding announced in April to expand apprenticeship in the U.S.
The recipients announced today will each receive $200,000 to help integrate apprenticeship into their education and workforce systems; engage industry and other partners to expand apprenticeship to new sectors and new populations at scale; conduct outreach and work with employers to start new programs; promote greater inclusion and diversity in apprenticeship, and implement state incentives and system reforms.
“There is a bright future for apprenticeship in America,” said U.S. Secretary of Labor Thomas E. Perez in announcing the grants during a visit to Milwaukee Area Technical College today. “The investments that we’re making today and in the weeks and months to come are about giving apprenticeship the greater stature it deserves, helping more employers get the talent they need and helping more workers punch their ticket to the middle class.”
These grants are part of ApprenticeshipUSA, the department’s coordinated effort with industry and education leaders, nonprofits, and local governments to highlight the benefits of apprenticeship and expand the use of this time-tested, earn-while-you-learn model.
87 percent of apprentices are employed after completing their programs, with an average starting wage above $50,000 per year. The return on investment for employers is substantial, as studies indicate that for every dollar spent on apprenticeship, employers receive average of $1.47 return in increased productivity, reduced waste and greater front-line innovation.
Posted in ban the box
Dallas might become Texas’ second major city to “ban the box” and require private employers to delay asking applicants about their criminal backgrounds until they have been given a conditional offer of employment.
The policy change would bring private employers in line with the city itself, Dallas County, and Austin.
“Many employers use any disclosure [of a criminal record] as an immediate disqualifier for a potential employee,” State Representative Eric Johnson said. “As a result of that type of behavior on the part of employers, an individual who was formerly incarcerated — no matter the reason, no matter what the conviction was for — is never really given an opportunity, and certainly not an opportunity to come in for an interview.”
Urmit Graham, Dallas County’s interim director of human resources, also said late last year that delaying asking about criminal records is essential to getting those with records back in the workforce.
Austin’s law, which is presented as a model in a presentation Dallas city staff is set to give the City Council on Wednesday, only applies to for-profit businesses with more than 15 employees. When enforcement of the ordinance begins in 2017, employers who violate the law will face fines.
The city council could vote on a background check ordinance as early as this summer.
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