Beginning today, April 3, 2009, employers are required to use a revised version of the employment eligibility form known as the I-9. Employers are required to complete an I-9 Form for each new employee. The purpose of the form is to verify the employee's eligibility to work in the United States.
As enforcement actions against employers utilizing illegal workers have increased, the I-9 Form has taken on additional importance. Full compliance with I-9 procedures can help to protect an employer from sanctions should it be discovered that any of its employees are not authorized to work in the United States.
The revised Form I-9 narrows the list of acceptable documents employees may present to establish their work eligibility. Ultimately, this change may prove helpful to employers as it reduces the number of immigration documents with which HR professionals must be familiar. The new Form I-9 also disallows the use of expired documents. In the past, certain expired documents such as U.S. passports were acceptable as proof of work eligibility. This is no longer the case.
A downloadable copy of the new Form I-9, as well as a revised version of the Handbook for Employers, is available at www.uscis.gov
If you have concerns about whether your organization's Forms I-9 are in full compliance with federal regulations, please contact us for assistance.