Employers should begin using a revised version of the I-9 employment eligibility verification form immediately, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services announced in a notice in the March 8 Federal Register (78 Fed. Reg. 15,030)
. However, the agency said it recognizes that some employers may need additional time to update their business processes, especially where they are using electronic I-9 forms. Therefore, the older version of the I-9 will be accepted up to 60 days after the date the notice was published. The old version will not be accepted after May 7, 2013.
USCIS noted that the revised I-9 does not need to be completed for existing employees who already have an I-9 on file, unless their employment eligibility needs to be reverified. The agency cautioned that unnecessarily reverifying employees' employment eligibility could violate the anti-discrimination provision of the Immigration and Nationality Act.
The I-9 form contains three sections:
• Section 1 collects identifying information about the employee, asks him or her to attest to being a citizen, noncitizen national, lawful permanent resident, or alien authorized to work, and asks the employee to provide documentation proving identity and work authorization;
• Section 2 collects information from the employer and the identity and work authorization documentation provided by the employee; and
• Section 3 collects information regarding the employee's continued work authorization when the documentation in Section 1 or Section 2 expires.
Three Key Changes
The main changes to the newly revised I-9 are additional data fields, including: the employee's foreign passport information (if applicable), telephone number, and email address; improved instructions; and a revised layout that expands the form to two pages instead of one, not counting the instructions and list of acceptable documents. Click here to download the new I-9 form from USCIS's website
. A Spanish version of the form is available on the USCIS website for use in Puerto Rico only. Employers also can obtain forms by calling 1-800-870-3676. More information about the I-9 process is available through USCIS's National Customer Service Center at 1-800-375-5283 and at www.uscis.gov/I-9Central
Employers must maintain I-9 forms for their employees as long as they work for the employer, and for the required retention period after the end of employment. That period either is three years after the date of hire or one year after the date employment ended, whichever is later.
Employers also must make their I-9 forms available for inspection by Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the Justice Department's Office of Special Counsel for Immigration-Related Unfair Employment Practices, and the Labor Department.