Department of Homeland Security

Fine and Punishment: I-9 Compliance Penalties Again on the Rise

The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (“DHS”) has once again increased fines for Form I-9 violations, marking the second time in as little as two years that the penalties have been raised. This recent trend in fine increases as well as the government’s active pursuit of new inspections underscores their determination to crack down on identity and employment authorization violations. In light of these developments, employers should review their I-9 policies and procedures and consult counsel to ensure compliance with government regulations and prevent costly fines for penalties assessed after February 12, 2024:

  • Form I-9 paperwork violations (per violation):
    • Up to $2,789
  • Unfair documentary practices (per individual discriminated against):
    • Up to $2,304
  • Failure to notify DHS and continuing to employ an individual after I-9 final non-confirmation (per individual):
    • Up to $1,942
  • Unfair immigration-related employment practices (i.e., discrimination) (per individual discriminated against):
    • First Order: Up to $4,610
    • Second Order: Up to $11,524
    • Subsequent Orders: Up to $23,048
  • Unlawful employment of foreign national (per unauthorized individual):
    • First Order: Up to $5,579
    • Second Order: Up to $13,946
    • Subsequent Orders: Up to $27,894
  • Document Fraud (per document and dependent on type of violation):
    • First Order: Up to $4,610
    • Subsequent Orders: Up to $11,524

With the recent implementation of the new Form I-9 and the soaring costs of Form I-9 penalties, employers should actively take steps to correct errors and ensure full compliance with Form I-9 requirements.

H-1B Cap Lottery Registration Closed for FY 2025

On March 25, 2024, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (“USCIS”) announced the close of the H-1B cap lottery registration period for fiscal year 2025 (“FY 2025”). The lottery which opened on March 6, 2024, was originally scheduled to close at 11:00 am CST on March 22, 2024, but was extended through 11:00 am CST on March 25, 2024, due to a technical system outage experienced by some registrants.

The lottery selections have now been completed by the government and notifications have been sent to registrants and their legal representatives. Please note that since glitches on the myUSCIS website have been reported by many users, rather than relying on receiving USCIS’s notification that action has been taken on your account, be sure to review each registration accordingly to confirm selection.

According to USCIS, the filing period for this year’s H-1B cap selections will run from April 1, 2024, through June 30, 2024, and petitions should be properly filed during this period and in accordance with Selection Notice instructions. Similarly to its practice in previous years, additional lotteries may be conducted by USCIS to reach the numerical allocations for cap-subject petitions through the end of FY 2025. Contact your immigration counsel to discuss possible H-1B alternatives and plan further immigration proceedings for individuals who may not be selected for this year’s H-1B Cap lottery.


The Immigration Practice Group at Munsch Hardt has extensive experience facilitating the exchange visitor process for companies in the U.S. and recently assisted with the designation of an international transportation conglomerate as a Department of State-approved J-1 host organization.