Don’t Put Your Company at Risk: I-9 Form for Employment Eligibility Verification

By Jezabel Southard

Posted on April 14, 2017

It can be challenging to remain compliant in today’s business environment with regulations and political climates changing frequently and often unpredictably. In this article, we will discuss the changes brought by the revised I-9 that was released in November of 2016 and is required to be used as of January 22, 2017.

The changes in the updated version include:

  • Section one verbiage “other names used” changed to “other last names used”
  • Addition of prompts to ensure information is entered correctly
  • Ability to enter multiple preparers and translators
  • Dedicated area for additional information
  • Supplemental page for the preparer/translator
  • Separate specific instructions for completing each field

This version is also designed to be simpler to fill out via computer with more drop downs and clear on-screen instructions. The completed form can be printed with an automatically generated QR code.

Streamlined certification for foreign nationals

A substantial change to the I-9 pertains to rules concerning EB-1, EB-2 and EB-3 immigrant workers. These rules have been updated to include automatic extension of the validity periods of Employment Authorization Documents (Form I-766) for up to 180 days if the employee:

  • Filed to renew Form I-766, Employment Authorization Document (EAD) on time
  • Is renewing the EAD in the same category as the previous EAD
  • Is eligible for the extension

For more information regarding the changes to the I-9 form, visit the US Citizenship and Immigration Services site.

Importance of E-Verify

Employers can further ensure compliance by entering I-9 information into E-Verify. This online system compares information from an employee’s I-9 to data from U.S. Department of Homeland Security and Social Security Administration records to confirm employment eligibility.

Features of E-Verify Include:

  • Secure 24-hour access via the web
  • Results in three to five seconds
  • Photo matching
  • Administrator tools that can manage various work sites remotely
  • Comprehensive online training
  • Alerts to notify employees to mismatches in their government records
  • Dedicated customer service by phone or email

For more information visit the E-Verify page on the USCIS site.

In Summary

As of January 22, 2017, employers are required to use the updated I-9 form. The changes make it simpler to fill out the form quickly and accurately. It also streamlines the renewal of EADs for eligible employees. The E-Verify system adds a layer of protection for employers.

At TERRA Staffing Group, our experienced recruiters can help you keep up with regulatory changes and make recommendations to keep your business compliant and profitable.

Contact us today to learn more about our recruitment services in Phoenix, Seattle and Portland.

Categories: HR and Management Advice, HR Compliance & Labor Laws

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