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FAQ / What are the IRCA anti-discrimination and document abuse rules?


What are the IRCA anti-discrimination and document abuse rules?

While employers need to be diligent about complying with IRCAís employment verification rules, they should not be so overzealous that they end up penalizing qualified workers. IRCA also has anti-discrimination rules that can result in an employer facing stiff sanctions. Employers of more than three employees are covered by the IRCA anti-discrimination rules (as opposed to the 15 or more employees required by Title VII of the Civil Rights Act). IRCA protects most US citizens, permanent residents, temporary residents or asylee/refugee from discrimination on the basis of national origin or citizenship status if the person is authorized to work. Aliens illegally in the US are not protected.

Under IRCA, employers may not refuse to hire someone because of their national origin or citizenship status and they may not discharge workers on those grounds either. The employer is also barred from requesting specific documents in completing an I-9 Form and cannot refuse to accept documents that appear genuine on their face. But note that an employer must be shown to have had the intent to discriminate.

Employers can separately be sanctioned based on legislation passed in 1990 if they request more or different documents than required by the I-9 rules. Employers originally were held strictly liable for violations under this category, but in 1996 legislation was passed requiring a showing that employers intended to discriminate.

Keywords: document, employment verification,
 




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