The Litigation Boutique LLC

Should you conduct an internal I-9 audit?

Running a business in Denver is more than just managing revenue and expenses and your employees. You must also stay in compliance with state and federal regulations. For instance, if you are a publicly traded company, you may have to submit quarterly financial reports in accordance with regulatory requirements established by the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC). Or, if you have employees, you may need to periodically check your records in human resources to ensure that you have the appropriate documentation on hand. Failure to comply with government regulations can easily result in very expensive fines that can damage your company's bottom line.

While an internal I-9 audit it not a legal requirement, it is typically in a company's best interest to conduct one periodically to make sure you are in compliance. Here are a few reasons why you should consider performing an I-9 audit in your company.

More instances of enforcement

The U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement has been steadily increasing worksite enforcement which means that if you are missing I-9s, you and your employees could find yourselves in a bit of trouble. In case immigration officials decide to review your company's workforce, it is important that you have current and complete I-9s from each member of your staff.

It could be time to go electronic

Keeping a stack of paper documents on hand can be very risky. For many companies, 60 to 80% of their paper I-9s are either missing, contain errors or are incomplete. If you have been keeping paper I-9s in your human resource department, there is a high probability that there are problems with the files.

Noncompliance is expensive

As of August 2016, the fines for I-9 noncompliance almost doubled. Moreover, they continue to increase. This means that if you have 50 new hires every year, your company could potentially face up to $130,000 in fines and penalties. A little extra proactive work can save you thousands if immigration officials decide to audit your I-9s.

If you have not done internal I-9 audit recently, it might be time to schedule one. Staying in compliance can save your business from violating federal and state regulations. If immigration officials choose to inspect your company and you have made no attempt to keep accurate and current employment records, your company could face serious repercussions.

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