What are the employer sanctions for non-compliance with California’s immigration laws?


sanctions for non-compliance with California’s immigration laws can result in severe penalties and legal consequences. The state of California has implemented several laws and regulations to ensure employers comply with immigration requirements and prevent the hiring of unauthorized workers. The primary law governing employer sanctions in California is the California Labor Code Section 90.2, also known as the California Immigration Reform and Control Act (IRCA).

Under the California IRCA, employers are prohibited from knowingly employing individuals who are not authorized to work in the United States. Employers must verify the employment eligibility of all employees by completing and retaining Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification, for each employee hired after November 6, 198

Failure to comply with these requirements can lead to various sanctions.

The penalties for non-compliance with California’s immigration laws can include fines, business license suspension or revocation, and even criminal charges. The specific penalties depend on the severity and frequency of the violation. Here are some of the potential sanctions

Civil Fines

Employers who knowingly employ unauthorized workers can face civil fines ranging from $2,000 to $10,000 per violation. The fines increase for subsequent violations.

Business License Suspension or Revocation

California law allows state and local agencies to suspend or revoke business licenses for employers who repeatedly violate immigration laws. This can have a significant impact on the employer’s ability to operate their business.

Criminal Charges

In some cases, employers who engage in serious violations, such as engaging in a pattern or practice of knowingly hiring unauthorized workers, can face criminal charges. These charges can result in imprisonment and substantial fines.

Debarment from Public Contracts

Employers who violate immigration laws may be debarred from participating in public contracts for a specified period. This can have a detrimental effect on the employer’s ability to secure government contracts and projects.

Legal Liability

Employers who fail to comply with immigration laws may also face legal liability from affected employees or third parties. This can include claims for unpaid wages, discrimination, or other employment-related violations.

It is crucial for employers in California to understand and comply with immigration laws to avoid these sanctions. Employers should establish proper hiring practices, conduct regular internal audits, and ensure all employees complete the required Form I-9 verification process.

  • July 7, 2023