In September 2011, Rep. Lamar Smith, then-chairman of the House Judiciary Committee, introduced legislation  mandating E-Verify for all U.S. employers.

  • Employers with more than 10,000 employees must enroll within six months. Employers with more than 500 employees must enroll within a year. Employers with more than 20 employees must enroll in 18 months. And employers with fewer than 20 employees have two years.
  • For agricultural employers who hire seasonal workers, the deadline is three years, and they can count seasonal workers hired in previous seasons as current employees who need not be re-verified.
  • A strong preemption provision underscores that the federal government, not the states, is the appropriate entity to make and enforce immigration law in the workplace. But the bill allows states to use “business licensing and similar laws” to penalize employers for not using E-Verify.
  • Employers have a safe harbor from prosecution if they use E-Verify in good faith and through no fault of their own receive an incorrect notice of work authorization.


IW statement on committee passing Legal Workforce Act

Legal Workforce Act

House Judiciary Committee press release

Greenberg Traurig summary of Legal Workforce Act

Greg Siskind summary of Legal Workforce Act

House Judiciary Committee hearing

Business Endorsements

IW national call on Legal Workforce Act

Chamber of Commerce: House versus Senate E-Verify bills

IW statement on introduction of Legal Workforce Act