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Use of the E-Verify Program by the Social Security Administration's Contractors

March 09, 2012

E-Verify is an Internet-based system operated by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) with SSA support. It allows participating employers to verify employment authorization of their employees. The FAR requires that, when applicable, all Federal departments and agencies are to include in contracts the Employment Eligibility Verification clause. The clause requires that Federal contractors register to use E-Verify and then verify that new hires and all new or existing employees directly performing work under a qualifying Federal contract are authorized to work in the United States.

The Inspector General found that from September 2009 through September 2010, SSA was inconsistent in inserting the E-Verify clause into qualified contracts requiring that contractors register to use E-Verify to confirm whether new hires and all employees directly performing work under a qualifying Federal contract are authorized to work in the US. In addition, even when the E-Verify clause was inserted in some qualified contracts, SSA did not take any steps to ensure the contractors had in fact registered to use E-Verify. Because the Agency either did not include the clause or verify that contractors were registered, the employment eligibility for 1,154 contract employees was not confirmed through E-Verify. The Inspector General informed SSA it needs to take steps to strengthen controls to ensure its contractors are using E-Verify to confirm whether their employees are eligible to work in the US.

The Inspector General recommended SSA issue reminders to contracting officers about E-Verify requirements, and confirm that contractors are registered for the E-Verify Program.

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