The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (“USCIS”) has revised the Form I-9 which employers will need to begin using 1/22/2017. The Form I-9 is used by employers to document employees’ work authorization status in the US. New employees must complete the Employee Section 1 of the I-9 Form no later than the first date of hire. Employers must then complete the form and certify the employee’s work authorization documents before the third business day following the date of hire. For states that participate in E-Verify, the information from the I-9 form will still need to be entered into the E-Verify website verifying work authorization status. This process has not changed.
A New Look and Use
What has changed is the look and use of the I-9 Form. The new I-9 form is a “smart” form, an editable PDF with prompts to help ensure information is entered correctly. This allows the form to be completed on the computer and with fewer errors. The term “smart” is not to be confused with an electronic form. Although the new form has prompts within each field, the PDF does not upload data as it is being completed. The new I-9 form will still need to be printed and signed as the previous I-9 Form was.
Employers still have the option of printing the form and completing it by hand if they prefer. In addition, employers who are currently using an electronic version or vendor service to complete the form electronically, these methods are still accepted. Just make sure the old form has been replaced with the new version.
New I-9 Form changes include:
- The “smart” form is now available as an editable PDF with prompts to help ensure information is entered correctly.
- Section 1 (Employee) section now asks for “other last names used” as opposed to “other names used” which may have been confusing.
- Additional fields have been added to allow for multiple preparers and translators.
- A dedicated area for including additional information has been added rather than having to use the margins
- The instructions have been separated from the form and now include specific information for completing each field.
The old form (OMB No. 1615 – 0047) with the expiration date of 3/31/2016 may still be used until January 21, 2017. While employers can begin using the new form now, the changes to the new I-9 form should be communicated to hiring teams to help answer any questions they may have.
For questions about the new I-9 Form and the E-Verify process, please feel free to contact us at Propel HR. Our team of HR professionals has created several tools and guides to help keep you in compliance with I-9 and E-Verify regulations.