Note: A full copy of the settlement agreement can be viewed Here.

This press release is also available in Spanish.

WASHINGTON – The Justice Department announced today that it has reached an agreement with Pyramid Consulting Inc., a Georgia-based IT recruiting company.

The settlement resolves claims that Pyramid Consulting discriminated against a new employee when they rejected their valid work permit documents and requested an unnecessary additional document for being an asylum and then fired them for refusing to to comply with an illegal request by the company.

“Employers cannot discriminate against workers based on their citizenship or immigration status by restricting the types of valid work permit documents workers can produce, or by firing them for refusing to comply with illegal document requirements,” said Pamela S., assistant attorney general. Karlan from the Department of Civil Rights at the Ministry of Justice. “We are pleased that Pyramid Consulting is compensating the prosecuting party for lost wages and is working with the Department of Justice to ensure that the company does not impose unlawful discriminatory barriers on employees to verify their employability.”

The department’s investigation began after an asylum filed a discrimination complaint against Pyramid Consulting with the Civil Rights Division. Based on its investigation, the department concluded that while performing an employability check using the Form I-9, Pyramid Consulting refused the employee’s driver’s license and social security card, which are adequately documented for Form I-9. The department also found that Pyramid Consulting requested a work permit document instead. After the employee had refused and Pyramid Consulting had pointed out the relevant law prohibiting unfair documentation practices, Pyramid Consulting terminated his employment. After the department initiated the investigation, Pyramid Consulting hired the employee again, but only after he had lost wages for several weeks.

The Immigration and Citizenship Act (INA) prohibits employers from requesting more or other documents than necessary to determine eligibility to work based on the citizenship, immigrant status, or national origin of workers.

Under the terms of the settlement, Pyramid Consulting will pay the United States a civil penalty of $ 5,204 and a refund of $ 13,920 to the employee. It will also revise its policies and procedures, ensure that relevant employees receive training on the requirements of INA’s anti-discrimination legislation, and are subject to departmental oversight during the term of the contract.

The Immigration and Workers’ Rights (IER) division of the Civil Rights Division is responsible for enforcing INA’s anti-discrimination legislation. The law prohibits citizenship status and discrimination based on national origin when hiring, firing or hiring or remittance for a fee. unfair documentation practices; and retaliation and intimidation. Like U.S. citizens and legal permanent residents, asylum seekers and refugees may have several types of valid Form I-9, and employers who request certain documents from them for Form I-9 may violate the law enforced by the IER.

Learn more about the work of IER and how you can get support in this short video. Applicants or workers who believe they have been discriminated against on the basis of their citizenship, immigration status or national origin when being hired, fired, hired or during the employability verification process (Form I-9 and E-Verify); or subject to retaliation, may bring charges. The public can also call the IER employee hotline at 1-800-255-7688. Call the IER Employer Hotline at 1-800-255-8155 (1-800-237-2515, TTY for the hearing impaired). Email; Sign up for a free webinar. or visit IER’s English and Spanish websites. Subscribe to GovDelivery to receive updates from IER.