E-Verify Information


The E-Verify program is now required for family businesses that are contractors or sub-contractors working on federal contracts.

E-Verify is run by the Department of Homeland Security and the Social Security Administration to test for employee eligibility verification.

“There are threshold exceptions and exemptions for certain products and services but any family business that is doing work as a contractor or subcontractor on government contracts should check with an immigration attorney to make sure they are in compliance,” according to top family business expert Don Schwerzler “E-Verify has been in and out of the court system for several years but as of Sept 8, 2009 the program is mandated.”

Schwerzler has been studying and advising family business entreprenerus for more than 40 years and he is the founder of the Family Business Institute and the web organization Family Business Experts, both of which are headquartered in Atlanta GA.


E-Verify (formerly the Basic Pilot/Employment Eligibility Verification Program) is an online system operated jointly by the Department of Homeland Security and the Social Security Administration (SSA). Participating employers can check the employment eligibility of new hires online by comparing information from an employee's Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification, against SSA and Department of Homeland Security databases. More than 141,000 employers are enrolled in the program, with over 7 million queries run through the system in fiscal year 2009 (as of August 8, 2009).

E-Verify is free and is the best means available for determining employment eligibility of new hires and the validity of their Social Security numbers.

For Employers

E-Verify is a voluntary program for employers, with limited exceptions. Companies can access E-Verify online and compare an employee's Form I-9 information with over 455 million records in the SSA database, and more than 80 million records in Department of Homeland Security immigration databases. E-Verify is an essential tool for employers committed to maintaining a legal workforce, and the number of registered employers is growing by over 1,200 per week. In the 2010 budget, Congress gave $100 million to the DHS for the E-Verify Program.

For Federal Contract Employers

Federal contractors and subcontractors will be required to use E-Verify beginning September 8, 2009. Executive Order 12989 mandates the electronic verification of all employees working on any federal contract. The amended Executive Order reinforces the policy that the federal government supports a legal workforce.

Homeland Security and the Social Security Administration.


1. The federal form I-9 is completed and the employer enters the information into E-Verify.

2. The E-Verify system requires the employer to validate a picture from DHS records with a picture on the employees driver's license.

3. The information is searched and the employer then receives one of the following notices:

a. Employment Authorized - the employee is cleared for work

b. DHS Verification in Process - a manual search of government records is required

c. Tentative Non-confirmation TNC - E-Verify found a mismatch in the information given and records in the database

If you have questions about your family business and the E-Verify Program, you can contact our Immigration Expert using the ASK THE EXPERT form at the bottom of this page

... or contact Homeland Security E-Verify Program

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