The following was provided by JKJ Workforce regarding H2B Compliance Audits being conducted by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS):
Over the past few days there have been several reports of DHS agents visiting H-2B employers to conduct random “compliance audits.”
In most cases, the agents visit the worksite or home office, but some of the contact comes by phone or email.
There does not seem to be a standard request for documents or standard list of questions. Some request just a few documents (I-9s, list of employees, etc.). Others are requesting extensive documentation of the type consistent with a full DOL wage and hour audit, including payroll reports.
It is not clear that DHS has authority to conduct these audits because DHS delegated “all” of its authority to DOL in 2009 to determine whether employers are complying with the H-2B program.
I suggest you do the following:
• Notify each of your offices/units that they may be contacted by DHS. (in person, by email, or by phone).
• If contacted by DHS (or DOL for that matter), be polite and tell the agent that you’ll be happy to work with them and that the company has a process for responding to these types of requests.
• Ask the agent to provide his/her contact information and a written list of the information/documents they want.
• The agent may attempt to pressure you into dropping everything and start producing documents. You are under no obligation to do that.
• Just be polite and tell the agent that someone will get back to them as soon as possible to follow up on their requests.
• Then contact JKJ Workforce and/or your attorney for further advice about how to proceed.
Let me know if you have any questions.
James Judkins, JKJ Workforce Agency