Clothing Retailer – Form I-9 Investigation

A $1,047,110 settlement fine was charged to clothing retailer Abercrombie & Fitch by US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) Office of Homeland Security Investigations (HSI) because of the employer’s failure to verify the employment eligibility of their workers.

After a Form I-9 investigation in November 2008, investigators uncovered “technology-related deficiencies” in their electronic verification system. Abercrombie & Fitch cooperated fully with ICE HSI and has since put into practice new measures to further prevent any violations. In addition, the audit did not reveal the company had knowingly hired any illegal workers. ICE HSI says this settlement serves a warning to others companies who may not be fully complying with employee verification procedures.

I-9 Forms must be completed by an employer for every individual employed to determine identity, eligibility, and evidence the documents are legitimately related to the individual. Under their new strategy implemented in 2009, ICE has been trying to reduce the demand for illegal workers by auditing and investigating suspicious companies.

MVP Law Group, P.A. provides assistance to employers interested in establishing an effective employment compliance program which includes training administrative personnel and other employees. If you are interested, please contact our office.