On July 17, 2017, the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced the release of a revised version of Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification. This is the second version of the “smart” I-9 initially released in November 2016. Employers can use the revised version or continue using Form I-9 with a revision date of November 14, 2016 through September 17, 2017. On September 18, 2017, employers must use the revised form with a revision date of July 17, 2017.
While there were no substantive changes to the appearance and data fields on the actual Form I-9, the instructions and Handbook for Employers: Guidance for Completing Form I-9 (M-274) underwent significant revisions. Revisions to the Form I-9 instructions include:
- The name of the Office of Special Counsel for Immigration-Related Unfair Employment Practices (OSC) has been changed to “Immigrant and Employee Rights Section” (IER). This agency, a unit of the Civil Rights Division of the US Department of Justice, is charged with enforcing laws preventing discrimination during the hiring process based on the employee’s citizenship, national origin or immigration status.
- “the end of” has been removed from the phrase, “the first day of employment”. This change serves as a reminder that Section 1 (the employee’s portion) MUST be completed no later than day one of employment.
Revisions related to the List of Acceptable Documents include:
- The Consular Report of Birth Abroad (Form FS-240) was added to List C. Employers completing Form I-9 on a computer will be able to select Form FS-240 from the drop down menus. E-Verify users will also be able to select Form FS-240 when creating a case for an employee who has presented this document for Form I-9.
- The “List C” documents have been reduced from eight to seven and renumbered, except the Social Security card.
USCIS has incorporated the above changes into its newly revised Handbook for Employers: Guidance for Completing Form I-9 (M-274). The new version of the M-274 is no longer published as a .pdf booklet, but is on the USCIS website as an interactive guide.