USCIS Launches E-Verify Self Check for Individuals01 Apr 2011
USCIS Director Alejandro Mayorkas announced on March 21, 2011 the launch of the E-Verify Self Check program. This is an initiative that allows individuals in the United States to check their employment eligibility information without charge.
Purpose: Correct Inaccuracies in Advance
The self check allows individuals to become aware of any inaccuracies in their records. The workers can address incorrect information and seek to resolve any mismatches or inconsistencies before applying for jobs. Most employers are not required to utilize the E-Verify system, however, participation by employers is becoming more common. The new initiative is intended to significantly reduce instances of delays in employer E-Verify processing by allowing individuals to investigate and correct problem areas in advance.
E-Verify Self Check is Currently Available in Select States Only
As the first step in the self-check initiative, the USCIS made access available to users whose physical residences are in Arizona, Idaho, Colorado, Mississippi, Virginia, and the District of Columbia only. The USCIS will be expanding the number of states whose residents will be able to use E-Verify Self Check in the coming months, until it is in place all across the United States. As of this writing, the USCIS has not provided any specific timelines for completion of the entire initiative.
E-Verify Self Check Consists of Four Steps
In the March 21, 2011 news release, the USCIS indicates that the E-Verify Self Check process consists of four steps. These steps include: entry of biographic information by the user; confirmation of identity; entry of work eligibility information such as Social Security number or Alien Registration number; and receipt of employment eligibility information based on the information found in the databases of the Social Security Administration (SSA) and the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).
Voluntary Program Provides Option to Resolve Mismatch
The USCIS Factsheet, which describes the benefits of the self-check program, indicates that the results generated in the E-Verify process are confidential and are not shared with any other users, including employers. In addition, those results cannot be used to replace the results of a regular E-Verify check performed by employers. If a worker receives a tentative non-confirmation, s/he has the option to contact SSA or DHS to correct the record. In order to facilitate this, the system will generate instructions available in English and Spanish in every case of a tentative non-confirmation.
By providing individual users with this secure and confidential process to check their employment eligibility information, E-Verify Self Check should reduce the employer burden of having to resolve tentative non-confirmations and mismatches generated by E-Verify.
As long-time readers of MurthyDotCom and the MurthyBulletin are aware, the E-Verify system has been the subject of much criticism from various groups and individuals, in part due to concerns over the accuracy of system results. The new E-Verify Self Check initiative, launched by the USCIS, is a positive development that gives individuals access to their personal results, which in turn allows for proactive correction of inaccurate information. This should reduce the instances of inaccurate results from E-Verify checks initiated by U.S. employers, particularly as this initiative becomes more widely available throughout the United States. Hopefully, the E-Verify program will be used in the future with greater confidence by employers if DHS and USCIS provide accurate information.
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