Accountability Through Electronic Verification Act would permanently authorize and require employers to use the E-Verify program. “E-Verify is a proven tool for employers, including myself, that helps reduce incentives for illegal immigration and safeguards job opportunities for Americans and other legal workers. Expanding the system to every workplace will improve accountability for all businesses and take an important step toward putting American workers first,” Grassley said. The Accountability Through Electronic Verification Act does the following:
- Permanently reauthorizes the E-Verify program that was created in 1996
- Makes the program mandatory for all employers within one year of date of enactment, requires federal contractors and agencies to use the program immediately, and directs “critical employers,” as identified by the Secretary of Homeland Security, to use the system within 30 days of designation
- Increases penalties for employers who illegally hire undocumented workers
- Reduces the liability that employers face if they participate in E-Verify when it involves the wrongful termination of an individual
- Allows employers to use E-Verify before a person is hired if consent is provided by the employee
- Requires employers to check the status of all current employees within 3 years
- Requires employers to terminate the employment of those found unauthorized to work due to a check through E-Verify.
- Helps ensure that the Social Security Administration catches multiple uses of Social Security numbers by requiring them to develop algorithms to detect anomalies
- Establishes a demonstration project in a rural area or area without internet capabilities to assist small businesses in complying with the participation requirement
- Amends the criminal code to make clear that defendants who possess or otherwise use identity information not their own without lawful authority and in the commission of another felony is still punishable for aggravated identity fraud, regardless of the defendant’s “knowledge” of the victim
- Requires employers to re-verify an employee’s immigration status if the employment authorization is due to expire
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