Effective July 17th, 2017, the USCIS announced another revision to the Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification. This becomes mandatory on September 18, 2017.
All U.S. employers must ensure proper completion of the Form I-9 for everyone they hire and they must use the most up-to-date form. If an employer wants to avoid nasty fines and/or penalties the employer needs to provide employees the form on their first day of employment. No exceptions!
The employee must present his or her employer with acceptable documents evidencing identity and employment authorization. The employer must examine the documents to determine whether the documents reasonably appear to be genuine and relate to the employee.
Audits conducted by US Citizenship and Immigration Services are becoming more common for employers of all sizes. To make sure you are on task doing what you should with your I-9’s, I advise you to consult with your HR Consultant. Internal audits can be done to ensure you are correctly verifying your employee’s ability to work in the United States.
Here are some tips for employers:
- You will find the revision date of the new I-9 in the lower left corner (07/17/2017).
- All current employees (hired after November 6, 1986) must have a Form I-9 on file.
- All new employees (as of September 18, 2017) must be given the entire new Form I-9, including the “list of Acceptable Documents.”
- You should only accept documents that are unexpired when completing an employee’s Form I-9.
If you want to tackle your own self audit, please see below for some Q & A.
Q. Does the employer need to fill out a new form I-9 if the employees signs not in the signature box but right above the signature box?
A. No. As long as it is clear that the signature relates to the attestation, (“I attest, under penalty of perjury….”), there is no need to complete a new Form I-9 or correct the placement of the signature.
Q. If an employer finds a mistake on previously completed Forms I-9, how should the employer correct the mistake?
A. The employer may draw a line through inaccurate information; write the correct information on Form I-9, initial and date of the correction. The employer should also make a note in the file that a self-audit was completed on that date.
Q. What if an employee fails to produce verification documents?
A. You have the right to fire a newly hired employee who fails to produce the required employment verification documents within business days of hire.
Q. What should an employer do if an invalid version of Form I-9 was completed for an employee at the time of hire?
A. If the wrong version of the Form I-9 was completed when the employee was hired, an employer should try to rectify the error. The best way would be for the employer and employee to complete the current version of Form I-9 and staple the previously completed Form I-9 to the current version. Include an explanation of what happened and sign and date the explanation.
To get a copy of the latest and greatest guidelines, download the Handbook for Employers, Guidance for Completing Form I9 .
A little more about us:
Susan Arnold, owner and lead HR Consultant at HR On-Call, LLC. Susan has 20+ years of HR experience and provides a HR presence to business organizations without the overhead expense of a full-time employee. Susan helps business owners improve employer/employee relationships and allows them to focus on their business while resting assured that they are in full compliance with state and federal law.
Areas of expertise:
- Reduce Employer Risk and Liability
- Customized Employee Handbooks
- Performance Reviews
- Improve Employee/Employer Relationships
- Background Checks
- Personality Assessments
- Guaranteed EEO Compliance
- Employee Retention
- Recruitment / Hiring
- Employee Discipline/Discharge
Susan is passionate about her customers and listens to their needs. If you are interested in any of the details above or would like more information about her services, please contact Susan!