The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), the agency that oversees lawful immigration to the U.S. issued an updated Handbook for Employers: Guidance for Completing Form I-9 in January 2017.
The 69-page guide, which can be downloaded for future reference, covers the latest revisions to the Form I-9 and detailed instructions. As of January 22, 2017, you can only use the new Form I-9 with the revision date of 11/14/2016 in the lower left corner (and expiration date of 08/31/2019). All previous versions are invalid.
The expanded content also includes information on photocopying and retaining documents, avoiding discrimination, penalties for noncompliance and the E-Verify program. At the end of the handbook, you’ll find helpful FAQs and images of sample documents.
With the increased attention on immigration under the Trump administration, now is the time to get your I-9 records in order. This includes using the correct I-9 employment eligibility verification form, following the latest instructions and maintaining records as required by law.
In general, the new I-9 forms for 2017 were modified to be easier to complete. Specific changes you should be aware of:
The essential requirements of the Form I-9 update remain the same. Section 1 must be completed by the employee by the end of their first day of work, and Section 2 must be completed no later than three days after the hire date. Plan to review any acceptable original documents the employee supplies, and retain all records as before.
Never tell an employee which documents to provide. Rather, have the employee review the list of acceptable documents and choose which ones to share.
As an employer, complying with Form I-9 requirements is an essential business practice — and mandatory with all new hires. In addition to making sure employees properly complete Section 1, you must accurately fill out Section 2, review all documents presented by the employee and sign and date the form.
HRdirect’s I-9 and W-4 app walks you through an automated, online authorization process to ensure you meet all federal recordkeeping requirements and avoid costly mistakes. It makes it easier than ever to complete the forms online and remain fully compliant.