A revised version of Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification has been published. Effective January 22, 2017, employers must only use the new version of the Form I-9 dated 11/14/2016 N. The old version dated 03/08/2013 N may still be used, but only until January 22, 2017.
The changes are designed to reduce errors and enhance form completion using a computer: the new form includes drop-down lists and calendars for filling in dates, on-screen instructions for each field, easy access to the full instructions, which have been separated from the form in line with other USCIS forms, and an option to clear the form and start over. The new form contains a dedicated area for including additional information, rather than having to add it in the margins; this may be particularly helpful in the context of porting H-1B cases from another employer. The form also provides a drop down option with helpful abbreviations of the names of documents presented by new hires to complete Section 2.
Some of the other changes include:
- Section 1 asks for “other last names used” rather than “other names used,” and streamlines certification for certain foreign nationals.
- The addition of prompts to ensure information is entered correctly.
- The ability to enter multiple preparers and translators.
- A supplemental page for the preparer/translator.
- When the employer prints the completed form, a quick response (QR) code is automatically generated, which can be read by most QR readers.
Form I-9 requirements were established in November 1986 when Congress passed the Immigration Reform and Control Act (IRCA). IRCA prohibits employers from hiring people, including U.S. citizens, for employment in the United States without verifying their identity and employment authorization on Form I-9.