Wal-Mart Settlement Has Repercussions For Employers
As reported from the World Federation of Building Service Contractors, the settlement between Wal-Mart Stores, Inc., the world’s largest retailer, and the federal government represents a significant change from past business practices when it comes to hiring independent contractors and subcontractors. The $11 million civil settlement with Wal-Mart and the $4 million in criminal fines paid by the 12 contractors who supplied janitorial services to the retailer, are the most significant enforcement actions taken by the U.S. in the field of immigration employment sanctions since the enactment of The Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986 (IRCA), which prohibits the hiring of illegal aliens. In addition, Wal-Mart will provide training to store managers on hiring practices and will also be required to verify that any independent contractors it uses are complying with immigration laws in their employment practices. This is significant in that employers will no longer be allowed to ‘hide behind’ subcontractors but instead will be held responsible for immigration law violations of those contractors they use to conduct their business. The case establishes greater responsibility on the part of the employer and the need to be more vigilant about complying with immigration laws.
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