California I-9 Compliance Update: New Law Takes Effect

California I-9 Compliance

California I-9 Compliance Update

Assembly Bill 450 took effect on January 1, 2018.  The law implements new requirements for California employers in relation to California I-9 compliance and worksite enforcement responsibilities.  The new law affects both public and private employers.

As outlined by Montserrat Miller of Arnall Golden Gregory LLP:

Limits voluntary consents

  • Employers (or their agent) cannot provide voluntary consent to an immigration enforcement agent to enter any nonpublic areas of a place of labor unless they provide a judicial warrant.
  • Employers (or their agent) cannot provide voluntary consent to an immigration enforcement agent to access, review, or obtain an employer’s employee records without a subpoena or judicial warrant. However, there is a carve out in the law for the Form I-9 when Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) agents present a Notice of Inspection (NOI). Please note, subpoenas are not always issued by a court. An administrative agency such as ICE can also issue subpoenas.

Employers must provide disclosures

  • Employers must provide notice (within 72 hours) to employees and if applicable their union representative, of any Form I-9 inspection by ICE as well as any other inspections of employment records conducted by an immigration agency.
  • In addition to the above notice requirement to employees and their union representative, the new law has other disclosure requirements. Namely, an employer must, upon request, provide a copy of the NOI. Additionally, they must also provide any follow up documentation describing deficiencies identified as a result of the inspection by ICE. The Notice of Suspect Documents or Notice of Discrepancies, both issued by ICE, are possible examples.

Limits re-verification

  • It limits re-verification of employees’ employment authorization unless specified by federal immigration law.

Penalties for non-compliance

  • The law allows for civil penalties for non-compliance ranging from $2,000 – $10,000.

Ms. Miller suggests that ALL employers have a plan in place to address worksite enforcement actions. California employers should update their plans in accordance with the new law.

I-9 compliance worksite enforcement is expected to increase. Because of this it’s especially important that employers have a process to manage current and new Form I-9 compliance.  Equifax can help with our award-winning suite of I-9 compliance solutions to streamline compliance and reduce administrative burden. Register here to see a demo of our I-9 Management solution.


About Brian Elfrink

Brian Elfrink leads the strategic direction and development for I-9 Management, E-Verify, and Remote I-9 solutions. He is responsible for new product initiatives, legislative analysis, and product management for all areas of Form I-9. In addition, Brian is responsible for analyzing and tracking market and client needs for new requirements related to identity and employment authorization and immigration reform.

During his 10 year tenure with Equifax, Brian has held strategic roles within Finance, Accounting, and Sales Operations. Brian received his Bachelor of Science in Business (Accounting) degree from Fontbonne University, his Master of Business Administration (MBA) degree from Lindenwood University, and is a certified Six Sigma – LEAN Green Belt.