E-Verify works by comparing the information employees provide on Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification against millions of government records. Generally, if the information matches, the employee’s case receives an Employment Authorized result in E-Verify. If the information does not match, the employer should give the employee an opportunity to resolve the mismatch. Employers must understand and follow the proper procedures in E-Verify which are designed to ensure fair treatment and due process for all employees.

Most employees have their employment authorization confirmed immediately. Occasionally, E-Verify cannot instantly confirm employment authorization and a manual review of government records is necessary. E-Verify will try to review the government records within 24 to 48 hours and let the employer know whether or not the employee is employment authorized.

If the information from an employee's Form I-9 does not match government records, E-Verify will display a case status of Tentative Nonconfirmation (TNC). A TNC case result means that the Social Security Administration (SSA) and/or the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) could not confirm that the employee's information matches government records. It does not mean an employee is unauthorized to work as there are legitimate reasons why an employee may receive this result.

E-Verify issues two types of TNCs, depending on which government agency encounters the mismatch:

  • SSA Tentative Nonconfirmation: This response indicates that SSA could not confirm the employee's information. The employer must notify the employee of the TNC and refer the employee to SSA.
  • DHS Tentative Nonconfirmation: There are two reasons an employee may receive a DHS TNC.
    • DHS was unable to verify employment eligibility (in which case the employer should instruct the employee to call DHS to find out how to resolve the discrepancy), or
    • The employer indicated that the photograph displayed by E-Verify did not match the photograph on the employee's document. If the employee contests this type of TNC, the employer must either scan and upload an image of the document or send a copy of the document via express mail at the employer's expense.

IMPORTANT: Employers may not terminate, suspend, delay training, withhold or lower pay, or take any other adverse action against an employee because the employee received a TNC, until the TNC becomes a Final Nonconfirmation.

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