Supreme Court Upholds Arizona’s Immigration Law Sanctioning Employers that Hire Undocumented Aliens
Arizona’s law that penalizes businesses for hiring workers who are in the US illegally was upheld by The Supreme Court rejecting arguments that states have no role in immigration matters.
Recently, the court said that federal immigration law gives states the authority to impose sanctions on employers who hire unauthorized workers.
The federal law makes the federal government the exclusive enforcer of immigration violations exempting state licensing provisions. However, Arizona defines licensing to include virtually all business permits, from incorporation documents to partnership agreements, and under state law, if an employer knowingly hires an illegal immigrant worker, the business can be fined for the first offense, and a second offense can mean you lose the right to do business in the state.
Business interests and civil liberties groups challenged the law, backed by the Obama administration.
The measure was signed into law in 2007 by Democrat Janet Napolitano, then the governor of Arizona and now the administration’s homeland security secretary. Lower courts, including the San Francisco-based 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals, previously upheld the law.