Why it matters

What do employers need to know about the new I-9 form? U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) published the revised form in July, offering a few tweaks on the prior version. Most important, employers may begin using the new form now or continue to use the current form through Sept. 17, 2017. As of Sept. 18, however, use of the new I-9 form is mandatory. Changes to the form’s instructions include the new name of the Office of Special Counsel for Immigration-Related Unfair Employment Practices, now referred to as the Immigrant and Employee Rights Section. In addition, the instructions in Section 2 have been modified. As for the list of acceptable documents, USCIS added the consular Report of Birth Abroad as a List C document, while all the certifications of report of birth issued by the Department of State have been combined. As a result, the List C documents have also been renumbered, with the exception of the Social Security card, which remains #1.

Detailed discussion

Time for a change: U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has published a new edition of the I-9 Employment Eligibility Verification form, dated 07/17/17 N. While employers may continue to use the current form (dated 11/14/16 N) through Sept. 17, 2017, use of the new form will become mandatory on Sept. 18. The current storage and retention rules for previously completed I-9 forms remain in effect.

Used by employers to verify the identity and employment authorization of citizens and noncitizens, an I-9 form must be properly completed for each individual hired, with employees attesting to their employment authorization by presenting acceptable documents as evidence of their identity.

The updates impact both the form itself and the list of supporting documentation that can be provided by employees.

On the form itself, the revised I-9 noted the change in name from the Office of Special Counsel for Immigration-Related Unfair Employment Practices to the Immigrant and Employee Rights Section. Section 2 of the form was tweaked to now read: “Employers or their authorized representative must complete and sign Section 2 within 3 business days of the employee’s first day of employment.”

The list of acceptable documents in List C also saw some changes. The Consular Report of Birth Abroad (Form FS-240) was added, while all the certifications of report of birth issued by the Department of State (Form FS-545, Form DS-1350 and Form FS0240) were combined. As a result, all the List C documents were renumbered, with the exception of the Social Security card, which remained at the top spot.

To view the new I-9 form, click here.