Just as employers were becoming used to the new Form I-9 released in January of this year, U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services announced that it will be releasing yet another updated version of the Form I-9 on July 17. While employers are encouraged to start using the new Form I-9, USCIS advised that employers would be permitted to continue to use the Form I-9 with a revision date of 11/14/16 until September 17. As September 18, 2017, however, employers are required to use the latest version of the Form I-9, dated 07/17/17 N.
By way of background, under the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986, employers are required to complete a Form I-9 for each new employee hired. The purpose of the Form I-9 is to verify the identity of each new employee and ensure that the new employee is authorized to work in the United States. The Form I-9 contains a list of acceptable documents for establishing an employee’s identity and authorization to work. Those documents include a U.S. Passport, Permanent Resident Card, driver’s license, social security card, and birth certificate, among others. More importantly, federal law requires employers to physically examine each document—with the employee physically present—to determine if the document reasonably appears to be genuine and relates to the employee presenting it.