Contractors Who Perform Public Works Must Comply With NC E-Verify Requirements

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Guest Editorial from Brian Schoolman, Safran Law Offices, Raleigh

Special thanks to Norma Houston with the School of Government at UNC for an excellent blog post about the impact of HB 786, which was one of two bills vetoed by Gov. McCrory and then passed into law by veto overrides.  As noted by Ms. Houston, the legislation went into effect immediately upon the Senate’s override of the Governor’s veto, so HB 786 is now law.

One of the provisions of the bill was to impose E-Verify requirements on contractors and subcontractors who enter into public contracts.  The language of the bill prohibits counties, cities, and states from entering into any contract unless the contractor and the contractor’s subcontractors comply with the requirements of Article 2 of Chapter 64 of the General Statutes, which imposed the E-Verify requirement upon private employers with 25 or more employees.  This prohibition specifically applies to purchase contracts of $90,000 or more, construction/repair contracts of $500,000 or more, and State IT contracts.

The bill did not specify the enforcement mechanism for contracts entered into in violation of these E-Verify requirements, but violations of Chapter 64 carry civil penalties for each failure to verify employment eligibility of an employee.

For contractors who do public work, the new law only matters if you have fewer than 25 employees.  Those with 25 or more should have been enrolled in E-Verify since July 1 of this year.  So for you small contractors and subs out there, if you are doing public work — even as a subcontractor — you need to get enrolled in E-Verify immediately, or else your ability to perform on public projects may be jeopardized. Read More.