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DOJ Settles Immigration-Related Discrimination Claims

The Department of Justice (“DOJ”) continued its crackdown from discriminatory methods by employers when it introduced, on January 24, it had arrived at a settlement agreement with a Virginia-based mostly insurance policy enterprise to solve allegations that the enterprise engaged in immigration-connected discrimination. The settlement, like lots of some others given that President Biden took business office, highlights the administration’s ongoing efforts to target and prosecute discriminatory techniques in violation of U.S. immigration law.

Allegations of Discrimination In opposition to Non-U.S. Employee

According to the press launch by the DOJ, the investigation uncovered that associates of the Virginia-centered enterprise engaged in discriminatory tactics by requesting a non-citizen (who happened to be a lawful long lasting resident) to offer a Lasting Resident Card for the duration of the selecting process. In actuality, the likely personnel experienced previously offered lawfully satisfactory documentation to satisfy the I-9 documentation need for new employees in the United States. Of system, pursuant to U.S. immigration law, all staff members in the United States have the ideal to choose which documentation to current when demonstrating their authorized position to function in this place.

On top of that, the DOJ investigation concluded that from June 1, 2017, by at least August 1, 2020, the organization engaged in discriminatory tactics in opposition to noncitizens by failing to consider and/or hire them for employment positions dependent solely on their citizenship status. These methods violated the anti-discrimination provisions of the Immigration and Nationality Act (“INA”).

In accordance to the settlement announcement, the business agreed to pay back $9,500.00 in civil penalties to the United States and up to $70,000.00 in back pay back to affected personnel. Additionally, the agreement requires that the organization prepare its employees on the prerequisites of the anti-discrimination provisions of the INA. Lastly, the enterprise will remain matter to departmental monitoring and reporting specifications.

Anti-Discrimination Provisions of the Immigration & Nationality Act

The anti-discrimination provisions of the INA can be identified at 8 U.S.C § 1324(b) and its affiliated regulations at 28 C.F.R. Portion 44. These provisions prohibit discrimination primarily based on citizenship status and national origin in the choosing, firing, recruitment, and referral of employees for a fee. The provisions also outlaw unfair documentary tactics, this kind of as the 1 concerned in this case. These legislation also make it illegal to retaliate versus or intimidate shielded people who file a discrimination-related grievance in opposition to the employer. Failure to comply with these laws can consequence in prosecution, foremost to civil penalties and other sanctions.

The DOJ Civil Rights Division’s Immigrant and Worker Rights Part (“IER”) enforces the anti-discrimination provisions of the INA. As Assistant Legal professional General Kristen Clarke of the IER famous about this situation, “Employers cannot refuse to retain the services of applicants based on their citizenship status other than when they are approved by law to do so. Businesses are also prohibited from discriminating from workers when verifying their authorization to function.” As shown by prior posts on this web site, enforcement of these laws has been steady underneath the Biden administration.

Discrimination Statements Less than the Biden Administration

The Biden administration proceeds to fight discriminatory procedures by employers, and as this settlement highlights, the effects of violating immigration regulation can be extremely costly. Appropriately, employers looking for to navigate the complexities of immigration regulation will have to workout their thanks diligence and seek advice from an lawyer. 


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