Employers Must Use a Revised I-9 Form for New Hires

Pursuant to the Immigration Reform and Control Act (IRCA), since 1986 Employers have been required to verify an employee’s authorization to work in this country. An Employer’s failure to obtain the verification, or failure to retain the Form I-9 containing required information, has always carried with it significant civil and criminal sanctions. The Form I-9 has changed over the years.

The United States Department of Homeland Security Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), the agency responsible for enforcing the IRCA, has continuously upgraded its enforcement efforts and has changed the Form I-9 several times. The latest Form I-9 has been issued and must be used for all individuals hired on or after May 8, 2013.

Although the changes are not dramatic, careful attention must be given to Form I-9 preparation. The Form I-9 now consists of two pages and periodically refers the preparer (an employee or employer, depending on the section of the Form) to “see instructions”. The Instructions consist of six pages and address most questions a preparer is likely to have and are titled “Instructions for Employment Verification”.

As in the past, Employment Eligibility may be verified by an individual’s presentment of either a List A document or, alternatively, by presentment of a List B and List C document. There is a new list of documents which qualify as List A, B, or C documents (“List of Acceptable Documents”). An Employer must be very careful in its identification of acceptable documentation as the List A, B, or C documents have changed significantly over the years.

The foregoing Form I-9, Instructions for Employment Eligibility Verification and List of Acceptable Documents may be obtained by visiting the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.

If you have any questions or would like assistance in connection with the new Form I-9, please contact Jon Farrell or Peter Schneider, co-chairs of the Labor & Employment Law Practice Group at Meltzer Lippe.