Maryland Is Now Part of the RIDE Program

Last month, Maryland joined the federal government’s RIDE program, which is something individuals who will submit an I-9 form and employers who use E-Verify for employment-eligibility verification should take note of. RIDE, which stands for “Records and Information from DMVs for E-Verify,” is a program that links E-Verify with state departments of motor vehicles and other state public safety offices. The RIDE program allows E-Verify to confirm the authenticity of driver’s licenses and state identification cards that employees present as Form I-9 identity documents. The RIDE program is intended to reduce document fraud and boost the accuracy of E-Verify.

In 2011, Mississippi became the first state to partner with US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) by making its driver’s license data available for E-Verify. At that time, the USCIS noted in a press release:

“More than 80 percent of employees present driver’s licenses to establish their identities when completing the Form I-9. By enabling E-Verify to compare driver’s license data against state records, RIDE will improve E-Verify’s accuracy and help combat document fraud when determining employees’ eligibility to work in the United States, while observing safeguards to protect employee’s personal data. RIDE helps combat document fraud by enabling E-Verify to confirm the authenticity of an additional identity document. For example, previously, if an employee presented a driver’s license to establish his or her identity and a social security card to establish his or her employment authorization, E-Verify would only have been able to confirm the validity of the social security card. RIDE enables E-Verify employers in Mississippi to confirm the validity of both documents.”