Business groups appeal E-Verify federal contractor decision and file emergency motion to block enforcement

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce and other business organizations have filed an appeal with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit seeking to overturn the Maryland District Court’s decision last week in favor of the E-Verify Federal Contractor Rule. Since the appeal will take some time to decide, the plaintiffs have also filed an emergency motion with the district court for injunctive relief to maintain the status quo of E-Verify while the appeal is under consideration.

In their emergency motion, the plaintiffs argue that blocking the rule’s implementation while an appeal is pending is appropriate due to the impending effective date (September 8, 2009) and other “good cause” factors which satisfy the court’s four-factor test. In particular, plaintiffs argue that their motion should be granted because (1) they are likely to succeed on the merits of the appeal; (2) the plaintiffs’ members will be irreparably harmed by significant E-Verify start-up costs; (3) the delay will not harm the defendants who have also prolonged the implementation; and (4) a delay is in the interest of the public, especially considering the likelihood that the issue may be resolved by legislative action when Congress returns from recess.

It’s unclear at this time how quickly the court will rule on the emergency motion. We will keep you posted of further updates regarding both the appeal and the emergency motion as they become available.