New Regulation Authorizes Federal Contract Awards Only To Those Employers Using E-Verify To Process Employee Work Authorization

Effective September 8, 2009, government contracts will be awarded only to those employers who use E-Verify to check employee work authorization. In a press release issued today, Department of Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano touted the new policy as a “smart, simple, and effective tool” that will assist in ensuring that federal contractors employ a legal workforce.

E-Verify has handled more than 6 million queries since October 2008, and is able to process over 96% of employment verifications within 24 hours. Operated by the Dept. of Homeland Security and the Social Security Administration, E-Verify is available at no cost to businesses and may be accessed via the Internet. The requirement to use E-Verify extends to all federal contractors and subcontractors, including those contractors who receive American Recovery and Reinvestment Act funds.

It is important for businesses to become familiar with E-Verify before the new rule becomes effective on Sept. 8, 2009. For more detailed information regarding E-Verify and to view the Department of Homeland Security’s press release announcing the Administration’s new policy, please visit:

For questions or additional information, contact the attorneys at Eckland & Blando.