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Worker can’t show he’s legal? He’s still eligible for workers’ comp

Illegal immigrants who can’t legally work in the United States are still eligible for benefits under the Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Compensation Act (LHWCA), according to a recent 5th Circuit Court of Appeals decision.

New worry: RICO charges for hiring illegals

The immigration landscape keeps changing, and employers must keep up. And now you also have to worry about employees who claim you hired illegal workers as a way to cut labor costs and therefore put legal workers at a competitive disadvantage. Clever attorneys have begun filing RICO Act lawsuits, alleging that some employers are essentially running “mob” operations.

E-Verify: E is for error 54% of the time, study says


E-Verify, the online tool employers can use to check the work-authorization status of new hires, wrongly clears illegal workers about 54% of the time, according to a study commissioned by the Department of Homeland Security. “Many unauthorized workers obtain employment by committing identity fraud that cannot be detected by E-Verify,” said the report by research firm Westat.

H-1B visa applications can be filed starting April 1

U.S. employers that want to hire workers using an H-1B visa would be wise to file their applications on or around April 1, the first day the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) will be accepting applications. H-1B visas are popular among employers that want to hire foreign workers for “professional” or “specialty” positions requiring at least a bachelor’s degree.

Newark software firm must pay $1.9 million for H-1B violations


Newark-based PERI Software Solutions has been cited for underpaying foreign computer analysts who came to the United States under the government’s H-1B visa program. According to the U.S. Department of Labor’s Wage and Hour Division, that violated the Immigration and Nationality Act.

Hiring foreign professionals and techs? H1-B visa deadline is April 1


The federal government will begin accepting employers’ petitions for H1-B visas on April 1, the first step employers must take to hire foreign workers to fill certain “professional” and “specialty occupation” positions. A better economy means the available 85,000 visas might be snapped up fast this year. Here’s how to get a jump on your competition.

Workers ‘illegal’? You still have to pay them


Employees can always sue if they haven’t been paid for their work—even if they’re in the country illegally and not eligible to work in the United States. Employers can’t use their undocumented status as an excuse for not paying minimum wage and overtime under the FLSA.

Koch Foods fined $536,000 after immigration raid


In late 2007, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) officials raided a Koch Foods plant in Fairfield, just outside Cincinnati. They found 161 illegal workers at the poultry plant. Now ICE has fined the company $536,000.

5 common I-9 mistakes


It is remarkable that a seemingly simple, one-page form—the Form I-9—can cause so many headaches. But who ever said a government form was easy, much less an immigration-related form. Here are the most common mistakes employers make.

Pilgrim’s Pride settles ICE investigation for $4.5 million


Pilgrim’s Pride Corp., one of the nation’s largest poultry processors, has agreed to settle with the government following a two-year Immigration and Customs Enforcement investigation into allegations that hundreds of its employees were unauthorized to work in the United States.