Revised Handbook for Employers: Instructions for Completing Form I-9 (M-274)

more+
less-
more+
less-

The newly revised Employment Eligibility Verification Form I-9 (Rev. 03/08/13 N) is now available for immediate use by all employers. To help inform employers of the revisions, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) is also offering free educational webinars that highlight the new features and changes made to Form I-9, which include fields and formatting changes, along with expanded and clearer instructions. The webinars offered by USCIS also include an overview of how to use Form I-9.

In addition, USCIS has published a revised version of the Handbook for Employers (M-274). The M-274 contains not only the instructions to complete the newly revised Form I-9, but also answers to substantive and procedural Form I-9 questions. The M-274 is available on the USCIS's website (www.uscis.gov). The previous version of the M-274 was dated January 5, 2011. The prior M-274 revision was July 31, 2009.

USCIS Director Alejandro Mayorkas has stated that the M-274 has been revised and updated with new information about applicable regulations, including new regulations about electronic storage and retention of Forms I-9; it clarifies how to process an employee with a complicated immigration status. It also addresses public comments and frequently asked questions.

Some of the many improvements, new sections and tools included in the M-274 are:

  • New visual aids for completing Form I-9
  • Examples of new relevant USCIS documents
  • Expanded guidance on lawful permanent residents, refugees and asylees, individuals in Temporary Protected Status (TPS), exchange visitors and foreign students
  • Expanded guidance on the processing of employees in or porting to H1-B status and H-2A status
  • Expanded guidance on extensions of stay for employees with temporary employment authorization

The Handbook for Employers now also includes information for employers in the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI) who must verify their employees' employment authorization on Form I-9 CNMI. It also highlights information about documents CNMI employers may accept from their employees.

For Further Information

If you have any questions about this Alert, please contact any of the attorneys in our Employment, Labor, Benefits and Immigration Practice Group or the attorney in the firm with whom you are regularly in contact.