Government shutdown takes E-Verify offline

The E-Verify work authorization program went dark Monday, becoming another casualty of the federal government shutdown.

While it is offline, employers won’t be able to enroll in the free online program or use it to verify whether newly hired employees are eligible to work in the U.S.

This development is particularly problematic in Georgia because state law requires private employers with more than 10 workers to use the program. Also, all city, county and state government agencies in Georgia must make their contractors use the program.

Georgia’s Legislature adopted the state’s E-Verify requirements in recent years to crack down on illegal immigration. Jobs are among the biggest magnets that attract illegal immigrants here. Under Georgia’s E-Verify law, cities and counties are prohibited from issuing business licenses to companies that don’t comply. When they apply for their licenses, employers must submit affidavits confirming they are using the work authorization program.