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Employers’ Immigration Law Update - September 2014

ICE Levies $2M Fine against Hotel for I-9 Related Violations

A Salt Lake City-based hotel will have to pay nearly $2 million for hiring unauthorized workers, including illegal aliens. The hotel will avoid criminal prosecution in exchange for its full cooperation with a U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement investigation and for taking action to correct its hiring practices. According to the non-prosecution agreement, several lower-level employees and mid-level managers conspired to rehire unauthorized workers amidst an administrative audit of I-9 employee verification forms that began in September 2010. The hotel was notified that 133 employees were not authorized to work in the United States; however, the conspirators created three temporary employment agencies, essentially shell companies, to rehire 43 of the unauthorized, and most of the workers returned under different names using fraudulent identity documents. 

$300K for H-2B Violations 

According to a Department of Labor announcement, the agency has charged a landscaping company with violating federal law by failing to hire U.S. workers, and for underpaying temporary foreign workers. The company will pay $280,000 in back wages to 80 workers and nine job applicants and $20,000 in civil money penalties. 

Immigration Reform Update

With comprehensive immigration reform legislation no longer a realistic possibility for the foreseeable future, advocates for reform have shifted their focus to executive actions the President may take unilaterally to implement changes in immigration policy.

The President reportedly is considering broad use of executive action, granting relief potentially to up to 6 million undocumented individuals, similar to what has been provided under the administration’s Deferred Action to Childhood Arrivals program (DACA). 

Building off of DACA, the President has directed the Department of Homeland Security to review the administration’s immigration enforcement policies and recommend additional changes, possibly expanding the deferred action and work authorization to family members of U.S. citizens and lawful U.S. residents. The administration reportedly also is looking at possible changes to current law and regulation that could benefit employers. 

Any unilateral action by the administration likely will be controversial.

Owner Liable for H-1B, J-1 Costs

The owner of several medical clinics is personally liable for back wages and the costs of physicians’ H-1B visas and J-1 waivers, the Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit has ruled. Kutty v. DOL, No. 11-6120 (6th Cir. Aug. 20, 2014). The Court held Dr. Mohan Kutty and his medical clinics violated H-1B provisions by having physicians cover the costs of their own H-1B visa petitions and related J-1 visa waivers.

Jackson Lewis P.C. © 2019


About this Author

Sean G. Hanagan, Jackson Lewis, business immigration lawyer, employment eligibility verification attorney

Sean G. Hanagan is a Principal in the White Plains, New York, office of Jackson Lewis P.C.

Working with human resources professionals and in-house counsel, he helps employers develop business solutions and policies for the hire and movement of international staff. Mr. Hanagan advises on I-9 employment eligibility verification, E-Verify and social security issues, and on best practices to avoid hiring-related discrimination. He defends companies subject to government audits and investigations, and guides employers through...

Minnie Fu, Jackson Lewis, Immigration Litigation Lawyer, Employment VISA Applications attorney

Minnie Fu is a Principal in the Washington, D.C. Region office of Jackson Lewis P.C. Her practice focuses on assisting employers in obtaining employment-related visas and advising employers on compliance with U.S. immigration laws and regulations.

Ms. Fu has twenty years of experience in employment-based immigration matters, including nonimmigrant and immigrant visa matters, developing corporate immigration policies and procedures for best practices, and strategic corporate planning for international personnel employment by...

Raazia K. Hall, Jackson Lewis, Employment Immigration Lawyer, Worker Retention Attorney

Raazia K. Hall is a Principal in the Atlanta, Georgia, office of Jackson Lewis P.C. Her practice focuses on immigration law.

Ms. Hall has numerous years of experience in employment-based immigration matters and employment documentation issues for domestic and international companies. Working with Human Resources Professionals and In-House Counsel, she assists in all aspects of visa matters related to the hiring and retention of foreign employees. She also is a frequent writer and speaker on issues related to immigration law...

David Jones, Shareholder, Collegiate and Professional Sports, Jackson Lewis,

David S. Jones is a Shareholder in the firm’s Memphis office while maintaining a practice in the Las Vegas office of Jackson Lewis P.C. He has practiced law exclusively in the area of immigration and related employment matters for nearly fifteen years. He represents clients in complex matters relating to both immigration benefits and enforcement and in proceedings before the Department of Homeland Security, the Department of Labor, the Department of Justice and the Department of State, as well as in matters related to citizenship status discrimination...

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