During a U.S. Federal Government shutdown, E-Verify is not available for new case creation or Tentative Non-Confirmation (“TNC”) resolution which otherwise are subject to very strict timing requirements. For employers who participate in E-Verify, it is important to note that the unavailability of E-Verify has no impact on an employer’s ability to timely complete the Form I-9 and employers should never delay and employee’s start date due an inability to create a case in E-Verify.
USCIS has made the following exceptions to policies to accomodate the disruption to processes for employers and ensure that any delays in case creation or TNC resolution, due solely to the unavailability of E-Verify, does not adversly impact employers’ compliance efforts. Per the USCIS website:
- “The ‘three-day rule’ for E-Verify cases is suspended for cases affected by the unavailability of E-Verify. We will provide additional guidance regarding these time deadlines once we reopen. This does NOT affect Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification, requirements—employers must still complete Form I-9 no later than the third business day after an employee starts work for pay, and comply with all other Form I-9 requirements.
- The time period during which employees may resolve TNCs will be extended. The number of days E-Verify is not available will not count toward the days the employee has to begin the process of resolving their TNCs. We will provide additional guidance regarding these time deadlines once we reopen.
- For federal contractors covered by the federal contractor rule, please contact your contracting officer to inquire about extending federal contractor deadlines.
- Employers may not take any adverse action against an employee because the E-Verify case is in an interim case status, including while the employee’s case is in an extended interim case status due to the unavailability of E-Verify. (Consult the E-Verify User Manual for more information on interim case statuses).”
For employers who use online I-9 systems, these systems will normally pend new E-Verify cases until the system is available and automatically submit thoas cases as soon as E-Verify becomes available. You should check with your provider to determine specific activities may be required by you. For employer’s who enter E-Verify cases directly into the E-Verify system, please be sure to put new employee I-9s aside and ensure that as soon as the E-Verify system becomes available that you create cases for those records.