Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (“ICE”) worksite enforcement priorities remain to target egregious employers and focus their efforts in critical infrastructure sectors. The latter includes chemical production, food, energy and transportation. It is expected that ICE will continue to conduct audits in concentrated surges, such as by issuing 1,000 Notices of Inspection (“NOI”) at any given point in time. However, these concentrated surges do not foreclose ICE from individually issuing a NOI to a company.
To assist with “form I-9” audits generated by the issuance of a NOI, the Employment Compliance Inspection Center (“ECIC”) was established to serve as a centralized point of contact for audit issues and to assist the field in streamlining its audits. The ECIC, based outside of Washington, DC, has a handful of auditors and is looking to hire more. It will be their job to assist auditors in the field, especially in large scale audits of forms I-9, where employers are being investigated for criminal violations and/or with employers who are in critical infrastructure and/or employers who are egregious violators.