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E-Verify

Frequently Asked Questions: Federal Contractors and E-Verify

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FEDERAL CONTRACTOR RULE-An OVERVIEW

What is the E-Verify Program?
E-Verify is a free, Internet-based system operated by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) in partnership with the Social Security Administration (SSA) that allows employers to verify the employment eligibility of their employees, regardless of citizenship. Based on the information provided by the employee on his or her Form I-9, the E-Verify system performs an electronic check of this information against records contained in DHS and SSA databases.
Why is Research Foundation at Stony Brook University beginning to use E-Verify?
Executive Order 13465, signed by President George W. Bush, requires any federal contracts that contain the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) E-Verify Clause use the E-Verify system to establish the employment eligibility of newly hired and current employees who directly perform work on a contract that includes the E-Verify clause.
When must the Research Foundation Comply?
Effective March 1, 2010, the Research Foundation at Stony Brook University is required to begin using the E-Verify System to verify employment eligibility.

FEDERAL CONTRACTS AFFECTED BY THE RULE

What is the FAR E-Verify clause?
The E-Verify Federal contractor rule requires the insertion of the Federal Acquisition Regulation ( FAR) E-Verify clause into applicable Federal contracts, which requires Federal contractors to use E-Verify to verify the employment eligibility of their new hires regardless of the funding source and all employees (existing and new) assigned to a Federal contract. Beginning September 8, 2009, Federal contracts may contain the E-Verify clause.
What types of Federal contracts are exempt from the E-Verify Federal contractor rule?
A contract is considered exempt, if one or more of the following apply:
  • Contracts of less than 120 days;
  • Contracts of less than the simplified acquisition threshold ($100,000);
  • Contracts that include only commercially available off-the-shelf (COTS) items or modifications to COTS item and related services; and
  • Contracts where all work is performed outside the United States
If the Research Foundation at Stony Brook University accepts sponsored awards from the Federal government, are they required to use E-Verify?
If the E-Verify clause is contained in the terms and conditions of the award then they are required to use E-Verify.

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EMPLOYEES AFFECTED BY THE RULE

Which employees must be checked through the E-Verify system?
While E-Verify is applicable to federally funded contracts as described in the previous page, it is important to note that effective March 1, 2010, all NEW Research Foundation Employees must be E-verified by your RF Payroll Specialist (contact list attached), regardless of the type of award they are paid from (contract, grant, cooperative agreement, sub-award, etc.). The E-Verify check may not be initiated until after the candidate has accepted the job offer and after the Form I-9 has been completed in Human Resource Services.
What information does RF Payroll need in order to complete verification through E-Verify for a newly hired or current employee?
Payroll needs documents, which must be unexpired, that establish identity and employment authorization, outlined on page 5 on Form I-9
If an employee has been previously verified in E-Verify, do they need to be verified again?
If an employee was previously verified in the E-Verify system, but has a four month or greater break in service, RF Payroll must E-Verify the employee again.
Are there any exceptions to the E-Verify requirements?
Yes. Employees directly performing work on a covered contract are exempt from E-Verify requirements if the employee:
  • Has been continuously employed at the Research Foundation since November 6, 1986; or
  • Holds an active U.S. Government security clearance of confidential, secret or top secret; or
  • Has had a background investigation completed and credentials issued pursuant to Homeland Security Presidential Directive (HSPD)-12
My employee is working directly on a Federal contract that contains the E-Verify clause. However, her employment on the contract will only last for a few days. Is this employee exempt from the E-Verify requirement?
No. The rule does not exempt employees based on the intermittent nature of the work or the length of time spent performing the work. Note that this employee must complete Form I-9 and be verified through the E-Verify system.

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Are F-1 students who are eligible for the 17-month F-1 OPT STEM extension affected?
For an F-1 OPT STEM student to be eligible for the 17-month extension, the University must be enrolled in E-Verify. All E-Verify participants will receive an E-Verify ID number that an F-1 OPT STEM student requires when filing Form I-765, Application for Employment Authorization.
What if a new employee does not have a Social Security number?
If a new employee does not have a social security number they must apply and receive one within six weeks of employment. Once they have their social security number they must bring the card to Human Resource Service, Research Payroll Unit. Upon receipt of the social Security card, Human Resource Services will E-Verify the employee. NOTE: While waiting for a social security number the employee can continue to work because you will have completed the I-9 process with that new employee to verify work authorization. The required I-9 documentation allows your employee to work temporarily without the SSN or the E-Verify system result.
How quickly will E-Verify provide a confirmation of work authorization?
The E-Verify system compares the employee?s information against both the Social Security Administration and Department of Homeland Security databases and a confirmation will be generated in three to five seconds. A discrepancy with one or both databases may result in a tentative non-confirmation and E-Verify will prompt a further review the submitted information to assure its accuracy.
What does Tentative Non-Confirmation response mean?
A Tentative Non-confirmation (TNC) indicates that the Social Security Administration (SSA) and /or Department of Homeland Security (DHS) could not confirm that the employee?s personal information matches SSA and/or DHS records. A TNC does not mean that the employee is not authorized to work in the United States.
Research Foundation Payroll will notify the employee of the TNC. The employee must then go to Human Resource Services, RF Payroll Unit to sign the Notice of Tentative Non-Confirmation, and the SSA or DHS referral letter. The employee must contest the TNC and resolve the discrepancy in his or her record. Under the law the employee must be allowed to continue working while resolution of a TNC is pending.

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What must an employee do once they have received the Notice to Employee of Tentative Non-Confirmation and Social Security Administration (SSA) and/or Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Referral letter?
When the employee receives a SSA TNC they must visit an SSA office within 8 Federal workdays to initiate resolution of their TNC. If the employee does not contact the SSA office and 10 Federal government workdays have passed since the date of referral, Research Foundation Payroll will automatically receive a ?SSA No-Show? notice from the SSA office.
When the employee receives a DHS TNC they must contact DHS by phone within 8 Federal workdays to initiate resolution of their TNC. If the employee does not contact DHS and 10 Federal workdays have passed since the date of referral, Research Foundation Payroll will receive a ?DHS No-Show? notice form DHS office.
If a Final Non-Confirmation is received, the RF will take action up to and including termination of employment. Employment of an employee with a Notice of Final Non-Confirmation cannot be continued without Albany RF Central Human Resource Office and legal review and approval. If it is determined that the employee is work authorized and the RF is legally able to continue employment, campus administrators must work to resolve the case in E-Verify. DHA must be notified of the continued employment. Thorough documentation of work eligibility must also be kept in the personnel file.
Is Release Time from work available to resolve a Tentative Non-Confirmation (TNC)?
Individuals who receive a tentative non-confirmation (TNC) from the federal E-Verify system and choose to contest with the Social Security Administration or Department of Homeland Security will be provided release time to resolve the TNC. Employees should charge the appropriate accrual.
For Further Information regarding the E-Verify Process and Documentation
Please call RF Payroll at (631) 632-6162.
For Further Information regarding the Contract Clause
Please contact Ivar Strand, Assistant VP of Sponsored Programs at (631) 632-4402.
For Further Information regarding Procurement or Subcontractors
Please contact Porshia Russell, Assistant Director at (631) 632-6019.

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