We previously told you about the expired Form I-9 (Rev. 03/08/13 N) that remained effective until the new "smart" version was released. A new Form I-9 was finally rolled out in November 2016, and employers will be required to use it starting January 22, 2017 or face civil penalties.

Employers are not required to update information on file for existing employees, but need to make sure that all new hires complete the revised form. You can confirm that you are using the most up-to-date version by cross-checking the revision date information on the bottom left corner of the Form I-9, which should indicate "(Rev. 11/14/2016 N)."

The new "smart" form has been geared toward minimizing the occurrence of common technical errors and providing further assistance to ensure forms are completed properly. However, the Form I-9 is not electronic I-9 software. While the form allows users to fill out the forms on the computer, it still requires employers to print the form for actual signatures. Employers utilizing third-party services should consult with the vendor of that product to ensure compliance with the revised form.

Note: Penalties for I-9 violations nearly doubled in 2016 resulting in increases for I-9 Form paperwork violations that now range from $216 to $2,156.