With the Presidential election over and recent Cabinet appointments, changes on immigration policy will likely occur in some fashion. Recent President-Elect’s comments and the appointment of Sen. Jeff Sessions as Attorney General give some indication of stronger immigration enforcement in the near future. So, what does this mean for Employers and how should Employers begin to plan for any change in employment-related immigration policy?
For Employers with workers on employment-based visas, the Human Resource department should audit these visas and related visa expiration dates. This enables an Employer to address changes on any visa renewals or adjustment of visas once the new Administration focuses on immigration issues in the U.S. This also enables Human Resource professionals to plan ahead for any potential changes in the employer’s workforce.
The Post-Election activity also hints that employers should evaluate its immigration compliance procedures. Anticipating an increase of immigration enforcement means the employer should audit its compliance practices on immigration matters. This includes auditing Form I-9s, immigration practices (like E-Verify), and compliance files.
Ultimately, the employer will want to be in the best position to address any changes in employment-based visas and compliance efforts.
While the above provides some issues for employers to consider, an employer with any questions, should contact an experienced immigration-employment attorney.
Today the USCIS published the new Form I-9 for employers to use. By Jan. 22, 2017, employers must use only the new version, dated 11/14/2016 N. Until then, an employer can continue to use the version dated 03/08/2013 N or the new version.
The changes in the new Form I-9 include the following:
- Section 1 asks for “other last names used” rather than “other names used.”
- The addition of prompts to ensure information is entered correctly.
- The ability to enter multiple preparers and translators.
- A dedicated area for including additional information rather than having to add it in the margins.
- A supplemental page for the preparer/translator.
This new change should key employers to not only update the Form I-9 but also to update their training and immigration compliance practices. Employers with questions about immigration compliance should contact an experienced employment immigration attorney.
Years ago, there were Open Houses when a business opened. Today, with websites there are Launch Dates. We are excited to announce the website for our new Employment & Immigration Law Firm at http://galdean.com/. Please share your comments or sign up for periodic Blogs and Newsletters coming soon.
In this Presidential Election, most people are planning to vote. Each year Employers and employees ask about taking time off work to vote especially when the employee is busy working most of the day. The attached link provides information on each States Voting laws and taking time off to vote. Most employers also have policies on this issue. If there are any questions, the employer or employee should ask an experienced employment attorney. http://www.findlaw.com/voting-rights-law.html
The EEOC approved its new Enforcement Plan for 2017-2021. The Plan keeps the same priority areas as previous years but adds two more areas. It adds 1) issues related to complex employment relationships and 2) backlash discrimination against those who are Muslim, Sikh, and Arab, Middle Eastern or South Asian descent. The Plan and new areas will likely evolve over the next year as the EEOC gets a new General Counsel when the current General Counsel leaves in December. https://www.eeoc.gov/eeoc/plan/sep-2017.cfm
Health problems are the No. 1 reasons for people leaving the workforce early (Survey by Employee Benefit Research Institute). When disabilities or health impairments involve the employee’s ability to perform their job, employers need to look at these issues closely. The following provides a checklist. Additionally, employers and employees should address these issues with an experienced employment attorney. https://www.shrm.org/hr-today/news/hr-magazine/1016/Pages/5-tips-for-addressing-employees-with-disabilities.aspx?utm_source=SHRM%20Tuesday%20-%20PublishThis_HRDaily_7.18.16%20(17)&utm_medium=email&utm_content=October%2004,%202016&SPMID=00655820&SPJD=02/20/2001&SPED=08/31/2017&SPSEG=&spMailingID=26690690&spUserID=MjIyOTY3MzE3NzUyS0&spJobID=900593926&spReportId=OTAwNTkzOTI2S0
For Businesses bring talented foreigners to the US, it is sometimes about timing. Getting the individuals into the U.S. can be important for the individual to begin work and the company to stay competitive. Additionally, quickly being processed at the Port, makes the employee’s travel that much less stressful. Now, an individual can secure their I-94 in advance to crossing at the Port with the online I-94 application payment. A business looking to address business immigration issues should contact an experienced immigration attorney. https://www.cbp.gov/newsroom/national-media-release/cbp-makes-online-i-94-application-payment-available-travelers
For the past year, employers and human resource professionals have been on the “look-out” for proposed changes to the overtime exemption regulations. The Department of Labor Secretary, Tom Perez, announced yesterday that the proposed rule on the changes was submitted to the Office of Management and Budget for review. After this review, the proposed rule will be published for review and comments by the public. The proposed rule would update which workers are exempt from overtime and will increase the salary threshold needed to earn as an exempt employee. Employers looking to address the changes to overtime exemptions should make sure they have experienced employment law counsel to provide advice on the changes.
Employers and Human Resource Professionals today deal with continued changes in employment law. On April 15, 2015, Trinidad Galdean, JD, PHR, SHRM-CP, will be speaking to the Wichita Society of Human Resources Management (Wichita SHRM) on Employment Law Updates for 2015. Knowledge about these recent changes and those on the horizon are key to minimizing and preventing workplace claims. Individuals interested in attending can register with the Wichita SHRM Chapter.