United States: Four Hot Labor And Employment Issues In Automotive In 2017 - Part 2

Monday we took a look at two important labor and employment questions for automotive employers and suggested next steps to consider during 2017. Today we'll examine questions three and four.

3. Are you in compliance with Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification requirements and other compliance obligations under federal immigration laws?

The United States Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has issued a revised version of Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification. Employers are required to complete and maintain the Form I-9 for every person who is hired in the United States after November 6, 1986. The newest version of the Form I-9 must be used as of January 22, 2017 for new hires and reverifications.

The new version of Form I-9 follows DHS's increase in the fine levels that may be imposed for I-9 violations. Under the new fine schedule, employers now face penalties as follows:

  • I-9 paperwork violations: $216 to $2,156 per Form I-9
  • Knowingly employing unauthorized alien (first offense): $539 to $4,313 per violation
  • Knowingly employing unauthorized alien (second offense): $4,313 to $10,781 per violation
  • Knowingly employing unauthorized alien (third or more offenses): $6,469 to $21,563 per violation
  • E-verify employers – failure to inform DHS of continuing employment following a Final Nonconfirmation: $751 to $1,502 per violation.

The United States Department of Justice (DOJ) enforces the antidiscrimination provisions of the I-9 rules and, as did DHS, the DOJ has also increased penalties for "document abuse" and unlawful employment practices. Document abuse usually occurs when an employer asks for specific documents or for more or different documents after the employee already has presented qualifying I-9 documents. Unfair immigration-related employment practices may occur when an employer treats job applicants and/or employees differently based upon their national origin or citizenship status while implementing I-9 procedures or addressing I-9 issues.

Penalties for document abuse and unfair-immigration related employment practices are now as follows:

  • Document abuse: $178 to $1,782 per violation
  • Unfair immigration-related employment practices (first offense): $445 to $3,563 per violation
  • Unfair immigration-related employment practices (second offense): $3,563 to $8,908 per violation
  • Unfair immigration-related employment practices (third or more offenses): $5,345 – $17,816 per violation.

Although we are less than one month into the new administration, President Trump has already begun fulfilling his campaign promises on enforcement of the federal immigration laws. We anticipate that DHS, through its Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) division, will increase the number of I-9 inspections and worksite visits. Just recently, federal agents conducted immigration enforcement raids at homes and workplaces in Atlanta, Chicago, New York, the Los Angeles area, North Carolina and South Carolina and arrested hundreds of undocumented immigrants.

Another change that the Trump Administration may seek is to make E-Verify enrollment mandatory. Currently, with some exceptions, E-Verify is a voluntary, web-based government program in which employers may enroll to verify employment authorization. E-Verify is a step beyond the I-9 process, and most employers may presently choose whether to take on this additional obligation. However, in the future, all employers may be required to participate in the E-Verify program.

Additionally, the Trump administration has signaled that DHS and the Department of Labor (DOL) are likely to step up compliance investigations in H-1B and L-1 intracompany transfer cases. As a result, employers should expect more random, unannounced onsite visits from DHS within the six months after a final decision in such cases. The visits in L-1 cases will be expanded from the current new office extension cases to all types of L-1 cases. Moreover, the DOL is likely to become even more aggressive in enforcing the Labor Condition Application obligations in H-1B cases. The DOL will scrutinize the compliance files and investigate whether the employer is meeting the H-1B obligations as to wages, working conditions, assigned worksites, and related issues.

Suggested next steps

Employers should review their I-9 procedures to ensure compliance with the law. Further, to minimize violations, employers should assign only trained staff to be responsible for the I-9 process with new hires and existing employees (if reverification is required). Employers should also periodically conduct internal audits of their existing I-9 Forms to check compliance. Employers that undertake immigration cases should ensure that they are meeting all requirements under the complex regulatory scheme for H-1B and L-1 cases.

4. What are the other anticipated hot topics in 2017?

Other anticipated hot topics for 2017 include paid sick leave; lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (LGBTQ) rights; and reasonable accommodations for religious practices, disabilities, and pregnancy.

Paid sick leave will continue to be a hot topic. Effective January 1, 2017, certain federal contractors entering into new covered contracts will be required to provide one hour of paid sick leave for every 30 hours worked, up to 56 hours (seven days) in a year. Although momentum for federal paid sick leave was growing prior to the election of Donald Trump — and Trump, himself, had suggested during his campaign that he may require employers to provide six weeks of paid maternity leave for new mothers — it remains to be seen whether President Trump will support paid leave efforts or take action to roll back paid sick leave requirements, including the new requirements for federal contractors. Either way, employers will still have to deal with a variety of paid leave laws, with paid sick leave benefits now mandated or in the process of implementation in several states (including California, Connecticut, Massachusetts, Oregon, and Vermont) and localities (including Chicago, Minneapolis, New York City, Portland, San Diego, Seattle, and most recently, Washington, D.C.). These laws will continue to cause compliance difficulties for multistate employers given the varying requirements and lack of consistency from location to location.

LGBTQ employee rights in the workplace and the law in this area continue to evolve. In the past two years alone:

  • The U.S. Supreme Court has upheld same-sex marriage as a constitutional right;
  • The EEOC has litigated and obtained settlements in cases over the issue of whether discrimination based on gender identity or sexual orientation violates Title VII;
  • The Obama administration enacted regulations to protect workers who are employed by, or seeking jobs with, companies doing business with the federal government from sexual orientation or gender identity discrimination;
  • In its Strategic Enforcement Plan for 2017 – 2021, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) identified protecting LGBTQ people from discrimination based on sexual orientation as an emerging and developing priority; and
  • The United States Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit could be the first federal appellate court to determine that Title VII protects against job discrimination based on sexual orientation.

Consequently, employers are encouraged to stay ahead of this trend by developing and enforcing policies prohibiting discrimination and harassment based on sexual orientation and gender identity and expression, in addition to other protected characteristics.

Finally, automotive employers should be mindful of the duty to accommodate applicants and employees based on pregnancy, disability, and religious practices. In its Strategic Enforcement Plan for 2017 – 2021, the EEOC identified accommodating pregnancy-related limitations under the Americans with Disabilities Act Amendments Act and the Pregnancy Discrimination Act as an emerging and developing priority, and it published guidance on discrimination based on national origin and related religious views. Likewise, courts continue to focus on the employer's duty to accommodate and the particular burdens of requested accommodations. Therefore, if you suspect that an employee is experiencing difficulty performing his or her job due to pregnancy, a potential disability, or a religious belief, the best course is to proactively discuss the situation with the employee and, when appropriate, provide a reasonable accommodation and/or otherwise begin the interactive process. Training managers and human resources personnel is also key to ensuring that the interactive process occurs and reasonable accommodations are identified and thoroughly evaluated in appropriate circumstances.

For additional information about these developments and more

Foley's experienced Automotive Industry Team has prepared a full report, entitled " Top Legal Issues Facing the Automotive Industry in 2017," that examines the road ahead regarding antitrust, security, labor and employment, M&A, and more. Download it today.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

To print this article, all you need is to be registered on Mondaq.com.

Click to Login as an existing user or Register so you can print this article.

Similar Articles
Relevancy Powered by MondaqAI
In association with
Related Topics
Similar Articles
Relevancy Powered by MondaqAI
Related Articles
Related Video
Up-coming Events Search
Font Size:
Mondaq on Twitter
Mondaq Free Registration
Gain access to Mondaq global archive of over 375,000 articles covering 200 countries with a personalised News Alert and automatic login on this device.
Mondaq News Alert (some suggested topics and region)
Select Topics
Registration (please scroll down to set your data preferences)

Mondaq Ltd requires you to register and provide information that personally identifies you, including your content preferences, for three primary purposes (full details of Mondaq’s use of your personal data can be found in our Privacy and Cookies Notice):

  • To allow you to personalize the Mondaq websites you are visiting to show content ("Content") relevant to your interests.
  • To enable features such as password reminder, news alerts, email a colleague, and linking from Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to your website.
  • To produce demographic feedback for our content providers ("Contributors") who contribute Content for free for your use.

Mondaq hopes that our registered users will support us in maintaining our free to view business model by consenting to our use of your personal data as described below.

Mondaq has a "free to view" business model. Our services are paid for by Contributors in exchange for Mondaq providing them with access to information about who accesses their content. Once personal data is transferred to our Contributors they become a data controller of this personal data. They use it to measure the response that their articles are receiving, as a form of market research. They may also use it to provide Mondaq users with information about their products and services.

Details of each Contributor to which your personal data will be transferred is clearly stated within the Content that you access. For full details of how this Contributor will use your personal data, you should review the Contributor’s own Privacy Notice.

Please indicate your preference below:

Yes, I am happy to support Mondaq in maintaining its free to view business model by agreeing to allow Mondaq to share my personal data with Contributors whose Content I access
No, I do not want Mondaq to share my personal data with Contributors

Also please let us know whether you are happy to receive communications promoting products and services offered by Mondaq:

Yes, I am happy to received promotional communications from Mondaq
No, please do not send me promotional communications from Mondaq
Terms & Conditions

Mondaq.com (the Website) is owned and managed by Mondaq Ltd (Mondaq). Mondaq grants you a non-exclusive, revocable licence to access the Website and associated services, such as the Mondaq News Alerts (Services), subject to and in consideration of your compliance with the following terms and conditions of use (Terms). Your use of the Website and/or Services constitutes your agreement to the Terms. Mondaq may terminate your use of the Website and Services if you are in breach of these Terms or if Mondaq decides to terminate the licence granted hereunder for any reason whatsoever.

Use of www.mondaq.com

To Use Mondaq.com you must be: eighteen (18) years old or over; legally capable of entering into binding contracts; and not in any way prohibited by the applicable law to enter into these Terms in the jurisdiction which you are currently located.

You may use the Website as an unregistered user, however, you are required to register as a user if you wish to read the full text of the Content or to receive the Services.

You may not modify, publish, transmit, transfer or sell, reproduce, create derivative works from, distribute, perform, link, display, or in any way exploit any of the Content, in whole or in part, except as expressly permitted in these Terms or with the prior written consent of Mondaq. You may not use electronic or other means to extract details or information from the Content. Nor shall you extract information about users or Contributors in order to offer them any services or products.

In your use of the Website and/or Services you shall: comply with all applicable laws, regulations, directives and legislations which apply to your Use of the Website and/or Services in whatever country you are physically located including without limitation any and all consumer law, export control laws and regulations; provide to us true, correct and accurate information and promptly inform us in the event that any information that you have provided to us changes or becomes inaccurate; notify Mondaq immediately of any circumstances where you have reason to believe that any Intellectual Property Rights or any other rights of any third party may have been infringed; co-operate with reasonable security or other checks or requests for information made by Mondaq from time to time; and at all times be fully liable for the breach of any of these Terms by a third party using your login details to access the Website and/or Services

however, you shall not: do anything likely to impair, interfere with or damage or cause harm or distress to any persons, or the network; do anything that will infringe any Intellectual Property Rights or other rights of Mondaq or any third party; or use the Website, Services and/or Content otherwise than in accordance with these Terms; use any trade marks or service marks of Mondaq or the Contributors, or do anything which may be seen to take unfair advantage of the reputation and goodwill of Mondaq or the Contributors, or the Website, Services and/or Content.

Mondaq reserves the right, in its sole discretion, to take any action that it deems necessary and appropriate in the event it considers that there is a breach or threatened breach of the Terms.

Mondaq’s Rights and Obligations

Unless otherwise expressly set out to the contrary, nothing in these Terms shall serve to transfer from Mondaq to you, any Intellectual Property Rights owned by and/or licensed to Mondaq and all rights, title and interest in and to such Intellectual Property Rights will remain exclusively with Mondaq and/or its licensors.

Mondaq shall use its reasonable endeavours to make the Website and Services available to you at all times, but we cannot guarantee an uninterrupted and fault free service.

Mondaq reserves the right to make changes to the services and/or the Website or part thereof, from time to time, and we may add, remove, modify and/or vary any elements of features and functionalities of the Website or the services.

Mondaq also reserves the right from time to time to monitor your Use of the Website and/or services.


The Content is general information only. It is not intended to constitute legal advice or seek to be the complete and comprehensive statement of the law, nor is it intended to address your specific requirements or provide advice on which reliance should be placed. Mondaq and/or its Contributors and other suppliers make no representations about the suitability of the information contained in the Content for any purpose. All Content provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Mondaq and/or its Contributors and other suppliers hereby exclude and disclaim all representations, warranties or guarantees with regard to the Content, including all implied warranties and conditions of merchantability, fitness for a particular purpose, title and non-infringement. To the maximum extent permitted by law, Mondaq expressly excludes all representations, warranties, obligations, and liabilities arising out of or in connection with all Content. In no event shall Mondaq and/or its respective suppliers be liable for any special, indirect or consequential damages or any damages whatsoever resulting from loss of use, data or profits, whether in an action of contract, negligence or other tortious action, arising out of or in connection with the use of the Content or performance of Mondaq’s Services.


Mondaq may alter or amend these Terms by amending them on the Website. By continuing to Use the Services and/or the Website after such amendment, you will be deemed to have accepted any amendment to these Terms.

These Terms shall be governed by and construed in accordance with the laws of England and Wales and you irrevocably submit to the exclusive jurisdiction of the courts of England and Wales to settle any dispute which may arise out of or in connection with these Terms. If you live outside the United Kingdom, English law shall apply only to the extent that English law shall not deprive you of any legal protection accorded in accordance with the law of the place where you are habitually resident ("Local Law"). In the event English law deprives you of any legal protection which is accorded to you under Local Law, then these terms shall be governed by Local Law and any dispute or claim arising out of or in connection with these Terms shall be subject to the non-exclusive jurisdiction of the courts where you are habitually resident.

You may print and keep a copy of these Terms, which form the entire agreement between you and Mondaq and supersede any other communications or advertising in respect of the Service and/or the Website.

No delay in exercising or non-exercise by you and/or Mondaq of any of its rights under or in connection with these Terms shall operate as a waiver or release of each of your or Mondaq’s right. Rather, any such waiver or release must be specifically granted in writing signed by the party granting it.

If any part of these Terms is held unenforceable, that part shall be enforced to the maximum extent permissible so as to give effect to the intent of the parties, and the Terms shall continue in full force and effect.

Mondaq shall not incur any liability to you on account of any loss or damage resulting from any delay or failure to perform all or any part of these Terms if such delay or failure is caused, in whole or in part, by events, occurrences, or causes beyond the control of Mondaq. Such events, occurrences or causes will include, without limitation, acts of God, strikes, lockouts, server and network failure, riots, acts of war, earthquakes, fire and explosions.

By clicking Register you state you have read and agree to our Terms and Conditions