Jobs and the Economy

Mandating E −Verify

Bad for Workers, Bad for Employers, Bad for Oregon

Once again, the 2012 Oregon Legislature faced an E-Verify Bill (HB 4052) that would force state agencies to use the employment verification system for all job applicants. But Mandatory E-­Verify will create hardships for employers, increase unemployment, and decrease government revenue. 

E-­Verify will discourage business growth and investment in Oregon

  • Forcing businesses to divert time and money to use E-­Verify will limit their financial resources needed to expand their business and hire new workers


  • E-­Verify will disproportionately impact small business owners, who have less financial and human resources. Over 75% of firms in Oregon employed 9 people or less.


  • In Arizona, where employers are required to use E-­Verify, a small business owner attempted to hire a part-­‐time worker, but a technical glitch that took days to fix made it difficult. He states, “If you don’t have the luxury of a human-­resources staff, E-Verify takes time away from your core business.”

E-­Verify will increase costs for employers

  • Employers will be forced to spend time and employee hours running the E-­Verify check and addressing falsepositives within the temporary non-­compliance warnings (TNC)


  • If use of E-­Verify is made mandatory, it will cost small businesses over $2.6 billion in fiscal year 2010.  


  • One small business in Maryland has estimated that it would cost approximately $27,000 for the company to use E-­Verify for one year, thereby handicapping the owner’s ability to hire new workers.

Errors in the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and Social Security Administration (SSA) databases will take away jobs from American workers

  • Employers that audit their own E-­Verify data report higher error rates than federal government estimates.


  • MCL Enterprises, a company that owns 24 Burger King Restaurants in Arizona, reported that over 14% of queries to E-­Verify resulted in a TNC, and the rate for foreign-­born workers was 75%.

Improper use and implementation will further hurt workers and cost the government time and money

  • According to a DHS-­sponsored evaluation of E-­Verify, 42% of workers reported that they did not receive notice of a TNC and were not able to contest it.


  • For those who are notified, the average waiting time in 2009 for a Privacy Act request at DHS to resolve a TNC was 104 days


  • If E-­Verify became mandatory, SSA estimates 3.6 million Americans would have to visit an SSA field office each year in order to keep their jobs.


The Future of MandatoryE

A naturalized U.S. citizen was hired by an Oregon telecommunications company but received a temporary non-­compliance (TNC) warning because SSA records did not accurately reflect his citizenship status. He successfully contested the TNC at an SSA office, but the SSA representative did not correct his record. E-­Verify then automatically issued a final nonconfirmation, at which point the employer is required to dismiss the nonconfirmed worker. The employer did not immediately terminate the worker, however, but ran another query in E-­Verify and got another TNC. The employee went back to SSA, and this time a representative updated his record but still failed to post the change to E-­Verify. Once again, the employee received a final nonconfirmation. Finally, he called the Office of Special Counsel for Immigration-­Related Unfair Employment Practices (OSC), which called the SSA field office to explain proper E-Verify procedures so that the employee could keep his job.

Mandatory E-­Verify In Oregon is not the solution to our unemployment, our economy, or our broken immigration system.  CAUSA urges legislators to focus support policies that effectively address the real needs and concerns of Oregonians, and help get Oregon back on the road to economic recovery.