Federal law requires employers in the United States to verify the identity and employment authorization of all new hires. This requirement was established by the Immigration Reform and Control Act (IRCA), in 1986. Employers must use Form I-9, which is maintained and periodically updated by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). On November 14, 2016, USCIS published an updated version of Form 1-9. This updated version will replace the current version dated 03/08/2013. Employers are required to use the updated version starting on January 22, 2017. Until then, employers may continue to use the version dated 03/08/2013.
The revisions to the form are intended to make it easier to complete the form, to reduce errors, and to update the form for completion using a computer. Some of the revisions include:
- Section 1 asks for “other last names used” instead of “other names used.”
- There will now be prompts to ensure information is entered accurately.
- Additional space to enter multiple preparers and translators.
- A new area in which to include additional information, instead of adding it in the margins of the prior version of the form.
- The instructions are now separate from the form itself. The instructions include specific instructions for completing each question.
- If completing the form using a computer, the new form contains new features such as: drop-down lists and calendars for filing in dates; on-screen instructions for each field; easy access to the full instructions, and an option to clear the form and start over.
Despite the revisions intended to make completing the form with a computer easier, employers must still print Form I-9 for signing and finalizing. However, the new features should make the initial process faster.
For more information on what restrictions, if any, employers may place upon an employee’s request for time off to vote and/or for questions of potential consequences for failure to allow employees to leave work to go vote, please contact one of Goosmann Law Firm’s skilled employment attorneys at 605-371-2000.