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The Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986 (IRCA) applies to all employees hired after November 6, 1986. The sanctions of this law fall into three broad categories: (1) employment of authorized foreign nationals; (2) recordkeeping; and (3) discrimination. It prohibits employers from knowingly hiring unauthorized aliens or maintaining them on the payroll once their employment authorization expires. It also requires employers to verify on Form I-9 the identity and authority to work of all employees, prohibits intentional discrimination in employment because of an applicant's national origin or citizenship status, and makes it an unlawful immigration-related employment practice to request more or different documents than permitted by the Immigration Service regulations, to refuse to accept any documents that appear facially legitimate, or to attempt to retaliate against employees who exercise their rights under the law.

The Immigration Law practice at EBG counsels employers on how to comply with this legislation, and represents companies accused by the government of violating these provisions. Civil and criminal penalties can be imposed against employers who persistently ignore the requirements of this law, so compliance is critical. The Immigration Law practice knows these laws and is available to assist any employer with questions in this area.

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