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8 Things HR Dept. Must Know About Immigration Laws

25th Sep 2017
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It is important for any organization to have a well-experienced and terminally sound Human Resource Department. With companies involving in trade across borders, more and more employees are traveling from one country to another on business terms. Now, to ensure that the immigration of the employees is aligned with the laws of the land, it is important that the human resource has the knowledge about immigration laws.

Here are the 8 top important things that Human resource managers must know about immigration laws:

Form I-9, Employee Eligibility Verification

  • Whenever a U.S. Firm hires an individual to perform any service to the organization in exchange for a salary or any other form of remuneration, it is important that the firm fills a Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification.
  • This I-9 form must be open to scrutiny by the Department of Homeland Security, Department of Justice, and Department of Labor
  • In case of failure to complete the I-9 form completely, an employer may be liable for civil money penalties.

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Immigration-related discrimination:

  • The employer has no right to discriminate its employees for immigration based on their national origin or citizenship status.
  • Employers must only demand identity or employment eligibility documents that are listed on the I-9 form. 
  • The employer must not refuse to accept any identity or employment eligibility document that appears valid on face value.

Sponsoring Nonimmigrant Work Visas

It is important that an employer has the knowledge of the resulting obligations when Sponsoring Non-immigrant Work Visas. 

Sponsoring a Green Card:

In case of non-managerial hire, the employee has to undergo a process known as labor certification application. This is the first step of becoming a permanent resident. Here the employer has to show the recruitment efforts done and also show that there was no eligible U.S. worker available to take up the job.

Mergers and Acquisitions:

In case of any merger or acquisitions are done by the company, the human resource department must check the immigration status of the employees of the organization, the effect of the merger or acquisition on their immigration status as well as the need to fill any document to ensure that all the employees have legal immigration status.

Corporate Immigration Policy:

Like all other policies of the organization, HR department must draft a policy for immigration. The policy must include:

  • What will be the circumstance for the company to sponsor a nonimmigrant visa and permanent resident status, pay feed for visa processes and hire external assistance?
  • Who will be responsible to determine the appropriate visa to use for those employees?
  • When to use B-1 visa or visa waiver?
  • Upon visa approval, who will supervise the worker’s work?

Hiring an Immigration Lawyer:

It is important that an organization must have a tie-up with an experienced immigration lawyer in U.S. The lawyer must be a pro in dealing with business immigration issues. He/ she may assist the employer in efficiently going through the Visa application process, and comply with all the rules and obligations.

Periodic Review:

There must periodic review to ensure that the organization complies with the immigration laws and any latest amendments.


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