If your company uses the electronic, fillable Form I-9 as part of your new employee onboarding process, you need to be aware of changes in the form, the use of which becomes mandatory on May 1, 2020.
All U.S. employers must complete and retain an I-9 for every new hire, verifying that the employee is authorized to work in the country. The employee must complete the designated section of the form and provide supporting documentation confirming his or her identity and employment authorization.
The new version of the I-9 dated October 21, 2019, is available for use now, and employers can submit either the new form or old one before May 1. While the paper version of the form remains unchanged, the electronic version contains some noticeable differences and clarifications that employers should note.
Specifically, the new electronic Form I-9:
- Clarifies who can act as an authorized representative of an employer when completing Section 2 of the form. While employers may designate anyone to be an authorized representative, the employer is still liable for any violations by the named person when completing the form.
- Simplifies the identification and review of acceptable documents. When entering document information in the List A column (or, alternatively, in the List B and C columns), employers no longer need to write “N/A” in the unused columns.
- Clarifies that a new hire’s Employment Authorization Document (EAD) containing a photograph is not included on the list of acceptable List C documents, though it is a List A document.
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While these modifications to Form I-9 are hardly earth-shattering, employers should ensure they comply with all employment authorization requirements and properly complete the form for all new hires in case they are ever audited by the U.S. Department of Labor.
If you have questions or concerns about the new Form I-9 or your company’s employment authorization responsibilities generally, the employment law attorneys at Kreis Enderle can provide you with sound, straightforward counsel to guide your decision-making.