USCIS requires use of new Form I-9
In December 2008, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) published an interim final rule that revised the Lists of Acceptable Documents for Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification, as well as publishing a new Form I-9, dated 02/02/09. The Obama Administration delayed the implementation of the new Form I-9 to allow additional public comment, but the new Form I-9 is scheduled to become official on Friday, April 3, 2009. Starting on that date, employers will be required to use the revised Form I-9 for all new hires and to re-verify any current employee whose employment authorization expires on or after April 3, 2009. An employer may not re-verify a current employee by completing “Section 3 – Updating and Reverification” on a previous version of Form I-9.
The current edition of Form I-9, dated 06/05/2007, will no longer be acceptable on or after April 3, 2009. Employers who continue to use the 06/05/2007 edition of Form I-9 on and after April 3 may be subject to civil money penalties. The revised Form I-9 and the updated Handbook for Employers, Instructions for Completing the Form I-9 (M-274), are available at www.uscis.gov.
The new Form I-9 makes changes to the acceptable List A documents offered to prove the employee’s identity and authorization to work. Three documents have been added to List A (Documents that Establish Both Identity and Employment Authorization) on the Lists of Acceptable Documents:
- A temporary I-551 printed notation on a machine-readable immigrant visa in addition to the foreign passport with a temporary I-551 stamp;
- A passport from the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM) or the Republic of the Marshall Islands (RMI) with a valid Form I-94 or Form I-94A indicating nonimmigrant admission under the Compact of Free Association Between the United States and the FSM or RMI; and
- A U.S. Passport Card.
Three documents were removed from List A on the Lists of Acceptable Documents:
- Form I-688, Temporary Resident Card;
- Form I-688A, Employment Authorization Card; and
- Form I-688B, Employment Authorization Card.
Another significant change is that employees must now present only unexpired documents for Form I-9. Previously, USCIS had authorized employers to accept certain expired documents as evidence of an employee’s identity.
There are no changes in the procedure by which Form I-9 is completed by the employer and the employee.
If you have further questions, please do not hesitate to contact any of our labor and employment attorneys.