Abstract

http://ssrn.com/abstract=2125232
 


 



Getting to Work: Why Nobody Cares About E-Verify (And Why They Should)


Juliet P. Stumpf


Lewis & Clark Law School

August 6, 2012

2 UC Irvine Law Review 381 (2012)
Lewis & Clark Law School Legal Studies Research Paper No. 2012-22

Abstract:     
Employment is traditionally conceptualized as a private contract between employer and employee. The Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986 (IRCA), which prohibited employers from knowingly hiring employees not authorized to work and required employers to request evidence of work authorization, introduced the government into this private relationship as an immigration enforcer and recast the employer as an immigration law gatekeeper. Today, comprehensive immigration reform initiatives propose to implement a nationwide system called E-Verify through which employers check employees’ work authorization via on-line government databases. E-Verify unveils how the employment verification laws establish U.S. employees as a class circumscribed by government authorization to work. More than IRCA, it increases the presence of government in the establishment of the employment relationship for all employees, regardless of citizenship status. E-Verify represents a contemporary example of a recurring phenomenon in U.S. immigration law: the imposition of immigration enforcement costs on the U.S. population as a whole. In pursuit of enforcement goals, E-Verify impacts significant individual interests. It does so by creating a very small risk per individual of a harmful error, but aggregates that risk across the working population. That small population-wide risk is paired with greater risks that the harmful error will fall on a minority of the population, unsettling the workplace’s potential for democratic integration.

Number of Pages in PDF File: 35

Keywords: immigration, employment, IRCA, E-Verify, verification, citizenship, enforcement, integration

JEL Classification: J61

Accepted Paper Series





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Date posted: August 8, 2012 ; Last revised: September 19, 2012

Suggested Citation

Stumpf, Juliet P., Getting to Work: Why Nobody Cares About E-Verify (And Why They Should) (August 6, 2012). 2 UC Irvine Law Review 381 (2012); Lewis & Clark Law School Legal Studies Research Paper No. 2012-22. Available at SSRN: http://ssrn.com/abstract=2125232

Contact Information

Juliet P. Stumpf (Contact Author)
Lewis & Clark Law School ( email )
10015 S.W. Terwilliger Blvd.
Portland, OR 97219
United States
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