States not mandating e verify

Nancy Berryhill, an Acting Commissioner of Social Security, recently testified in front of the House Subcommittee on Social Security on the widespread use of Social Security Numbers (SSNs) beyond their intended function.

Most of her testimony concerned the history of SSNs, past security procedures, and proposed future ones.

E-Verify is an electronic employment eligibility verification system run by the federal government that is supposed to check the identity information of new hires against government databases to verify that they are legally eligible to work.

Congress created E-Verify to deny employment to illegal immigrants and reduce the incentive for them to come and remain in the United States.

If the government mandates E-Verify then it would mandate a government computer check of the SSNs and other identity documents used to get a job that would increase the value of having a valid SSN even above what the I-9 currently promotes.

Berryhill acknowledges the above point when she testified that, “As long as the SSN remains key to accessing things of value—credit, loans, and financial accounts, and thus numerous common goods and services—the SSN itself will have commercial value, and it will continue to be targeted for misuse.” She also stated that: While not intended, the SSN has become the personal identifier most broadly used by both government and the private sector to establish and maintain information about individuals.

E-Verify is not yet mandated nationwide but several states have mandated its use, to various degrees, and many large employers currently use it.

E-Verify builds on the current rudimentary employment verification known as the I-9 form that every new employee must fill out thanks to the 1986 Immigration Reform and Control Act (IRCA).

It is supposed to check the identity information of new hires against government databases to see if they are legally eligible to work.

The employee is work authorized if the databases decide that the information is valid.

A flag raised by either database returns a “tentative non-confirmation,” requiring the employee and employer to sort out whatever error has been flagged.

An E-Verify mandate would add another layer on top of the I-9 whereby employers, after collecting I-9 forms, would enter the information on them into a government website.

The E-Verify system then compares that I-9 information with information held in the Social Security Administration (SSA) and Department of Homeland Security (DHS) databases.

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