Following the recent U.S. Supreme Court ruling that allows state and local governments to mandate the use of E-Verify and penalize violators, counties in Washington and Utah unanimously passed E-Verify ordinances yesterday.
Cowlitz County, WA now requires current contractors (and any employer vying for a county contract) to use E-Verify to prove that their workers are legal. This E-Verify requirement applies to any contractor employee who will work on the project, no matter how long they’ve been employed.
Commissioner James Misner called the decision a “no brainer,” saying that the federal E-Verify system is more accurate than simply taking a copy of a worker’s Social Security card and filing it with employment paperwork. Nearby counties of Clark and Lewis and the city of Woodland already require E-Verify, and backers of the new ordinance say that without the requirement, illegal immigrants would flock to Cowlitz.
Meanwhile in Utah, county commissioners enacted their own E-Verify ordinance. Beginning in mid-December, all places of business in the unincorporated areas of Washington County will be required to confirm the employment eligibility of new hires through the E-Verify system. While Utah currently has statewide E-Verify requirements (here and here), there are no penalties for non-compliance (other than ineligibility to enter state contracts) and it only applies to businesses with 15 or more employees.
Disclaimer: The content of this post does not constitute direct legal advice and is designed for informational purposes only. Information provided through this website should never replace the need for involving informed counsel on your employment and immigration issues.