New Law 2018 –Immigration Enforcement

Photo by Seabass Creatives via Unsplash

Immigration was a hot topic this year and starting January 1, 2018, employers will see increased obligations as they relate to employees’ immigration status.  Earlier this month, Governor Brown signed AB 450 into law.

Beginning January 1, 2018, employers will have the following obligations as they relate to immigration enforcement agents and the workplace:

1. No access without a warrant: Employers, and others acting on their behalf, may not voluntarily consent to immigration enforcement agents entering nonpublic areas of a place of labor without a warrant.

For example, if you own a restaurant, immigration enforcement agents are free to enter the dining room but may not enter the kitchen or back office without a warrant permitting them to do so.

Penalties for violating this requirement are $2,000 to $5,000 for the first violating incident and $5,000 to $10,000 for each subsequent violation.

2. No inspection of records without warrant or subpoena: Employers, and others acting on their behalf, may not voluntarily provide immigration enforcement agents the ability to access, review, or obtain the employer’s employee records without a subpoena or judicial warrant except for access to I-9 forms or other documents for which the employer received a Notice of Inspection.  Employers are not precluded from challenging the validity of the subpoena or warrant.

Penalties for violating this requirement are the same as those listed above.

3. Notice Requirement: Within 72 hours of receiving a Notice of Inspection, employers are required to provide each current employee a written notice (meeting specified requirements of Section 90.2 of the Labor Code) of any inspections of records conducted by an immigration agency.  Additionally, an employer, upon reasonable request by any affected employee, must provide the employee with a copy of the Notice of Inspection of I-9 Employment Eligibility Verification forms.

4. Disclosure of Results: Within 72 hours of receiving the immigration agency’s notice providing the results of the inspection of I-9 Employment Eligibility Verification forms or other employment records, employers must hand deliver at the workplace (if possible) a copy of the notice to each current affected employee.

Penalties for violating this requirement are the same as those listed above.

5. No reverifying: Except as otherwise required by federal law, employers are prohibited from reverifying the employment eligibility of a current employee at a time or manner not required by federal law.

The penalty for violating this provision is $10,000.

PRACTICAL TIP:  Since the new statutes provide very specific requirements on what information must be provided to employees and the stress of having any type of government agent showing up at your place of business is overwhelming, you could best prevent violations of these provisions by designating a point person to address any requests for inspection or review of records, establish internal policies and checklists of what must happen when, and advise all employees to contact the point person should immigration agents knock on your business’s door.

If you have questions regarding this or any new laws going into effect in 2018, feel free to contact me or call (949) 529-0007.

Subscribe to our newsletter

* indicates required



Please read our disclaimer.

In: Employer Postings, Employment Law, New Laws, Uncategorized

Comments are closed.