The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (CIS) has a new Form I-9 for new hires that employers can start using now and will have to use after April 30.
According to the CIS notice, the form with the version date “(Rev. 10/21/2019)” in the bottom corner of is the most up-to-date. It’s available digitally at www.uscis.gov/i-9, and employers can order the paper version at www.uscis.gov/forms/forms-by-mail.
“USCIS is allowing employers this additional time to make necessary updates and adjust their business processes,” the notice states. “After April 30, 2020, however, the prior version of Form I-9 will no longer be valid for use and will be obsolete.”
The form is not needed for existing employees, unless reverification is required.
For more information, visit the agency’s website or call the agency’s Contact Center at 800-375-5283.
The new form also comes with updated instructions, clarifying who can act as an authorized representative on behalf of an employer and what constitutes acceptable documentation.
Form I-9 is required for all employees to verify their identity and employment authorization, but the process has been fraught with legal liabilities for employers.
As writer Kate Tornone at HRDive.com pointed out, employers must ensure that someone personally reviewed the documents proving the identity of the employee. Also, employers can be fined for not having sufficient documentation, but can also be charged with discrimination if they ask for too much, particularly from members of a protected class.
“What’s more, the stakes may be higher than ever,” Tornone adds. “The Trump administration announced in 2017 that it planned to increase U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement workplace inspections four- to five-fold — and began trying to make good on that promise.”