Employee identity and employment eligibility verification have been in effect since 1986 when Congress passed the Immigration Reform and Control Act. Verification for all employees is mandated with penalties for non-compliance up to $2,507 per employee. In 2017, the office of the US Citizenship and Immigration Services announced changes in when and on what form employers should obtain verification of US citizenship. Additional changes were announced in January of 2020 and it was prematurely stated the changes were in effect. PCS provided updated information at that time. Since then, the implementation of the new form has been changed and delayed multiple times. In addition, the promise that an online form would be validated has been even further delayed – you still must use the paper form. USCIS has now announced the new requirements will go into effect on October 31, 2022. Some updated information and a few easy steps will keep you in compliance with this law.
The new form is simplified, and the associated instructions are simplified.
BIG CHANGE. The listing of acceptable documentation for employment was revised. You still must copy and maintain either one document from List A – OR – a document from BOTH List B and List C.
- List A Documents – List A Documents establish both identity and employment authorization.
- US Passport
- Other various passports (can review the entire listing at https://www.uscis.gov/i-9-central/form-i-9-acceptable-documents
- List B Documents – List B Documents establish identity
- Driver’s license (US or Canadian)
- ID card issued by Federal, State or local government (must include picture, name, date of birth, height, eye color and address)
- School ID card (must include a photograph)
- US military card
- Native American tribal document
- List C Documents – List C Documents establish employment authorization
- Social security card
- US or Birth Abroad birth certificate
- Form 1-197 US Citizen ID card
- Form 1-179 US resident citizen of US
What Do I Need To Do
For all new hires, you must complete and maintain the new I-9 form. The form and instructions for completion may be found at https://www.uscis.gov/i-9. Be sure to pay attention to the new document requirements. Section 1 of the form must be completed on the employee’s first date of employment and Section 2 must be completed within three (3) days of employment. The best advice is complete the entire form on the employee’s first date of hire (the first day they report to work).
Employers must review existing employees’ I-9 forms for all other employees to make sure the documents have not expired and are included in the new listings noted. If the document is expired or the previous documents are not included in the current acceptable listing, you must re-verify the employee (complete new I-9 form).
What About the E-Verify System
The E-Verify process was created to ensure that the documentation supplied by employees matches Federal information. The system is not a Federal requirement but is required in many states (for some or all employees). Regulations are complex and PCS recommends you complete the E-Verify process in the following states:
Alabama, Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Louisiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, North Carolina, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Virginia and West Virginia (current listing as of September 1, 2022)
In most cases, you have three (3) days to E-Verify new hires. To complete the process, go to https://www.e-verify.gov/ and simply follow the self-guided process. If you have not used the system before, you will be required to enroll. This is actually the most difficult part of the process – this guideline can help speed the process along.
Before you enroll, you must decide:
- Who will electronically sign the E-Verify memorandum of understanding (MOU) (PDF, 152.35 KB) on behalf of your company?
- Which hiring sites will participate in E-Verify?
- Which company location(s) will access E-Verify?
- Who in your company will have access to E-Verify?
- Who in your company should be a program administrator?
To enroll, you will need to know:
- Contact information for your company’s E-Verify memorandum of understanding (MOU) signatory (name, phone number, fax number and e-mail address)
- Company name
- Doing business as’ name (optional)
- The physical address of the location from which your company will access E-Verify (including county)
- Company mailing address (if different from the physical address)
- Employer identification number (also called a Federal Tax ID Number)
- Total number of employees for all of your company’s hiring sites that will participate in E-Verify (you’ll choose from a range of numbers)
- The first three digits of your company’s primary North American Industry Classification System (NAICS) code (if you don’t know it, we’ll help you find it when you enroll)
- The number of hiring sites that will participate in E-Verify in each state