Today, the Department of Homeland Security announced implementation of a new version of Form I-9, the Employment Eligibility Verification Form. The new version bears a revision date of March 8, 2013. All employers must begin using the new form immediately, but in no event later than May 7, 2013. It is lawful to use the prior version until that date.  

Employers do not need to use the new form to complete a new I-9 for current employees for whom an I-9 is already on file. Doing so could be construed as document abuse discrimination. Note, however, that the new version of the form must be used if the employee’s employment authorization must be reverified. In other words, if your employee presented a List A or List C document (other than a US passport or permanent residence I-551 card) that has an expiration date, you must reverify employment eligibility before the expiration of that document. Do not use Section 3 of the current form to do that; instead, use the new form and staple it to the pre-existing form.

According to DHS, the revised I-9 form adds new data fields, including space for the employee's foreign passport information, telephone number, and e-mail address. It remains unclear why the telephone number and e-mail address are required. Presumably, instead of visiting the employee at the home address listed in Section 1 of the form, Immigration and Customs Enforcement will contact the employee by telephone or e-mail.

The revised form is also intended to improve the form’s instructions and change the layout of the form. This will result in an expansion of the form from one page to two pages (not including the separate pages for the form’s instructions and the List of Acceptable Documents).

Although the official notice published in the Federal Register states that the new I-9 form is available on the government website at www.usics.gov, it is not yet available as of this writing.  We recommend that employers check the site on Monday to see if the form is available.  If there is a further substantial delay, we will advise employers accordingly.  

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