Employment Alert: 2007 I-9 Revisions from USCIS
On November 7, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announced that it has revised the I-9 Form. Although the USCIS has stated that use of the new form will not be mandatory until notice is provided in the Federal Register, Employers are strongly encouraged to begin using the new version immediately. USCIS has also issued a new version of the Handbook for Employers. The new form and Handbook are now available for download at www.uscis.gov.
All U.S. employers are required to complete and retain the three-page I-9 forms for each individual they hire in the U.S. This rule applies to all employees, citizens and noncitizens alike. The form must be available for inspection by authorized U.S. Government officials (e.g., U.S. Immigrations and Customs Enforcement, Department of Labor) at all times.
The Changes That Matter to You
Five documents have now been removed from List A of the List of Acceptable Documents:
- Certificate of U.S. Citizenship (Form N-560 or N-561)
- Certificate of Naturalization (Form N-550 or N-570)
- Alien Registration Receipt Card (I-151)
- Unexpired Reentry Permit (Form I-327)
- Unexpired Refugee Travel Document (Form I-571)
One document was added to List A of the List of Acceptable Documents:
- Unexpired Employment Authorization Document (I-766)
All Employment Authorization Documents with photographs have been consolidated as one item on List A:
- I-688, I-688A, I-688B, I-766
Instructions regarding Section 1 of the Form I-9 now indicate that the employee is not obliged to provide his or her Social Security number in Section 1 of the Form I-9, unless he or she is employed by an employer who participates in E-Verify.
Employers may now sign and retain Forms I-9 electronically.
Although the form itself is not filed with ICE or USCIS, the employer is required to retain the form for the entire duration of an employee’s employment plus one year, or a period of three years from the date of hire, whichever is longer.
The national debate over immigration policy has led to an increase in enforcement practices by ICE and USCIS. Now, more than ever, we remind our clients that Form I-9 compliance is critically important to their operational governance.
For more information on this Alert, please contact Peter D. Guattery. (410-347-9431; firstname.lastname@example.org).
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This Client Alert is published by the law firm of Whiteford, Taylor & Preston, LLP. The information contained here is not intended to provide legal advice or opinion and should not be acted upon without consulting an attorney. Counsel should not be selected based on advertising materials, and we recommend that you conduct further investigation when seeking legal representation. – Albert J. Mezzanotte, Jr., Managing Partner