Special Immigration Alert: Federal Government Agrees to Postpone E-Verify Contractor Rule

On January 28, 2009, the federal government agreed to postpone until May 21, 2009, implementation of a new regulation and related federal procurement law that requires federal contractors to use the electronic verification program (E-Verify) to assess the employment authorization of workers on federal contracts. This is the second delay in implementation of this rule.

Bill Wright, a spokesperson for USCIS stated that the postponement will give the Obama administration "?...an opportunity to review the rule prior to its widespread implementation." He stated further that DHS, "?...remains committed to implementing the E-Verify electronic employment verification system, which is free, voluntary, and represents the best means available for determining employment eligibility of new hires and the validity of their Social Security numbers..."

A notice confirming this postponement will be published in the Federal Register on January 30, 2009. Accordingly, the rule, which was supposed to take effect on January 19, 2009, will not become applicable to contractors until at least May 21, 2009. Stay tuned!