U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has released today a new and revised version of Form I-9. After several rounds of revisions and changes, the new and revised Form I-9 has been made officially available on the USCIS website and through the Federal Register.
As required by the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986 (IRCA), the Form I-9 is used by employers to verify a new employee's identity and to establish an employee's employment eligibility in the United States.
According to USCIS, the new Form I-9 contains formatting changes and the inclusion of additional data fields, including an employee's foreign passport information, telephone number and email address. Moreover, the new Form I-9 has been expanded from one to two pages, and the form’s instructions provide additional clarifications.
USCIS's notice states that:
Employers must use the new Form I-9 immediately; however, USCIS recognizes that some employers may need additional time in order to make necessary updates to their business processes to allow for use of the new Form I-9. USCIS recognizes that modifications to electronic systems may be particularly necessary for employers utilizing electronic Forms I-9. For these reasons, USCIS is providing employers 60 days to make necessary changes. USCIS believes that the 60-day period will help alleviate the burden that immediate implementation of the newly revised Form I-9 would have imposed on employers.
It is important to note that employers do not need to complete the new Form I-9 "(Rev. 03/08/13) N" for current employees for whom there is already a properly completed Form I-9 on file, unless re-verification applies. Unnecessary verification may violate the anti-discrimination provision at section 274B of the INA, 8 U.S.C. 1324b, which is enforced by the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) Office of Special Counsel for Immigration Related Unfair Employment Practices.
USCIS's notice also contains the dates that employers should begin using the newly revised Form I-9 and announces the date that employers can no longer use prior versions of the form. The new Form I-9 with a revision date of "(Rev. 03/08/13) N" is available for use beginning from the date of its publication in the Federal Register. Prior versions of Form I-9 "(Rev. 08/07/09) Y" and "(Rev. 02/02/2009) N" can no longer be used by the public effective 60 days from the publication date of the new Form I-9 in the Federal Register. Failure to use the new and revised Form I-9 can result in the imposition of penalties under the Immigration and Nationality Act. U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement will be responsible for enforcing compliance with the new and revised Form I-9.
Employers can obtain the new Form I-9 by calling USCIS's National Customer Service Center at 1-800-375-5283 or by visiting USCIS's I-9 Central webpage at www.uscis.gov/I-9Central.
A Spanish-language version of the new Form I-9 is available on the USCIS website for use in Puerto Rico only.
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.