While the E-Verify electronic employment eligibility verification system remains largely voluntary under federal law, an expanding number of states have enacted legislation making the system mandatory in varying circumstances. At the present time, there are nine states that require most employers to utilize E-Verify, eight states that require public contractors to use E-Verify, and five states that require local and municipal employers to use E-Verify.

New laws passed in Georgia and Tennessee relating to E-Verify usage will become fully effective this summer. In Georgia, starting on July 1, 2013, all private employers with more than 10 employees must enroll in E-Verify and use it to verify the employment eligibility of all new employees. In addition, every employer subject to these E-Verify requirements must submit a compliance affidavit to its local government before it can obtain or renew its business license. In Tennessee, all employers with six or more employees are required to enroll in and use E-Verify by July 1, 2013. Violators in Tennessee are subject to civil fines based on the number of violations and number of employees who were not verified.