This week, USCIS issued a new Form I-9 (edition date: 7/17/2017) that all employers must begin using for new-hire verifications starting on or after Monday, September 18, 2017.
The revisions to the Form I-9 were mostly technical, compared to the major changes in form and electronic function last year. Specifically, the Form FS-240, Consular Report of Birth Abroad, is now listed as a List C acceptable document. Additionally, all forms issued by the Department of State reporting births abroad are now combined in one section under List C.
The instructions have been revised to reflect that the Office of Special Counsel for Immigration-Related Unfair Employment Practices (“OSC”), the Department of Justice entity responsible for prosecuting I-9 related unfair employment practices, has changed its name to The Immigrant and Employee Rights Section (“IER”).
Finally, USCIS clarified timelines for certain I-9 processes. Specifically, Section 1 of the Form I-9 must now be completed “no later than the first day of employment,” as opposed to a previous command that it must be completed “no later than the end of the first day of employment.” Similarly, individuals who are employed for less than three days must present I-9 documentation “no later than the first day of employment”, as opposed to a previous command that documentation be provided “no later than the end of the first day of employment.” USCIS has also released a new Form M-274 Handbook for Employers: Guidance for Completing Form I-9, relating to these changes.
We encourage our clients using paper forms to begin using the new version immediately to ensure a timely change in I-9 processes, although the immediately previous version (11/14/16) may validly be used until the end of the day September 17, 2017. Clients using electronic I-9 systems should reach out to their vendors and ensure the new form version is integrated. Following these updates, Green and Spiegel also recommends that employers revisit their I-9 policies and procedures to ensure that section 1 of the form I-9 is completed no later than the first day the employee begins work for pay.
Contact us today if you have any questions or concerns relating to Form I-9 or your company’s employment verification processes.