The Immigration and Nationality Act, as amended by IRCA and all subsequent amendments, prohibits employers from hiring undocumented immigrants. IRCA applies to all employers, including those that hire domestic help or farm laborers. Employers are required to verify that all employees hired after November 6, 1986, are legally entitled to work in the United States. The law also makes it illegal to discriminate in hiring and firing based on citizenship status or national origin.
Employees must provide employers with documents that show (1) identity and (2) employment eligibility.
Employees must also complete an Employment Eligibility Verification Form, known as Form I-9, attesting under penalty of perjury that they are either U.S. nationals or immigrants authorized to work in the United States. The law is administered by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), which is part of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).
The interaction of state and federal power with respect to immigration has been heavily tested, with the U.S. Supreme Court striking down several state attempts to undertake immigration enforcement duties deemed solely within federal authority.
For example, in Arizona v. U.S., 567 U.S. ___ (2012)., the U.S. Supreme Court held that three of the four provisions of an Arizona state law—specifically, making it a crime under state law to fail to complete or carry an immigrant registration document while in the U.S.; prohibiting, under state law, an unauthorized immigrant from applying for, soliciting, or performing work; and authorizing state law enforcement officers to conduct warrantless arrests of immigrants believed to be ...