As the roofing industry becomes more reliant on an immigrant
work force, reviewing and refamiliarizing yourself with immigration
and employment laws can save you a great deal of headaches and
possible exposure to liability. One aspect of immigration and
employment law that can save you from trouble is learning your
legal liability for, and how to deal with, your independent
contractors and subcontractors.
The Immigration Reform and Control Act (IRCA) of 1986 requires
employers to verify every employee they hire is legally entitled to
work in the U.S. IRCA makes it illegal for any U.S. employer to
hire, recruit or refer for a fee an alien known to be unauthorized
to work; continue to employ an alien known to be unauthorized; and
hire, recruit or refer for a fee any person (citizen or alien)
without following the act's recordkeeping requirements.
If you knowingly hire illegal immigrants or permit illegal
immigrants to work after discovering they are not legal, you face
fines and penalties. Fines and penalties also are assessed against
employers who fail to document compliance regardless of whether any
of the employees are illegal. Fines range from $100 to $1,100 per
employee for paperwork violations depending on the employer's size.
Fines jump to $250 to $11,000 per each unauthorized alien employed.
However, there are two exemptions.
The first exemption is known as the "grandfather" clause, which
exempts those unauthorized aliens hired on or before Nov. 6, 1986,
the date of...
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