Welcome to the August 2007 issue of Gardere’s Monthly Immigration Alert. This is a complimentary service to clients and friends of the firm to keep you informed of pertinent developments in immigration law that may affect you and/or your employees. Please feel free to contact Irina B. Plumlee at (214) 999-4862 or Julie S. Wade at (214) 999-4916 with your comments and questions.

Hot Off the Press:

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has just issued its final regulations, effective Sept. 14, 2007, detailing what employers must do when faced with receipt of a “no match” letter from the Social Security Administration (SSA) or a letter from DHS regarding its I-9 employment eligibility verification forms. Importantly, the new rule prescribes employer’s action on a “no match” letter within 30 days of its receipt. The new rule also provides so called “safe harbor” procedures, deemed by DHS to be reasonable steps that employers should follow to resolve a discrepancy discovered by the SSA or DHS among an employee’s name, social security number, immigration status or employment authorization documents. On the other hand, employers should remain aware of taking measures that might lead to discrimination claims. Employers are advised to consult their immigration attorney and develop a plan of action for compliance.