The New Form I-9 is Here: Is Your Organization Ready@f12
A key piece of the hiring process, the Form I-9 employment eligibility verification, has an upcoming deadline with which all U.S. employers must comply. The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) recently released a revised form with a revision date of November 14, 2016. While employers will be allowed to use either the current form or the new form through January 21, 2017, the new form will be mandatory effective January 22, 2017. Under federal immigration law, employers must maintain a properly completed Form I-9 for all employees hired in the U.S. after November 6, 1986.
Here’s what you need to know about the new Form I-9 and how it will change your employment eligibility verification process.
What’s Changed in the 11/14/2016 N Form I-9
There are several changes USCIS has implemented in the updated version of the Form I-9. Among these changes, Section 1 asks for “other last names used” rather than “other names used,” and is intended to streamline certification for certain foreign nationals, according to the agency.
Other key changes to the new form include:
- The addition of prompts to ensure information is entered correctly.
- The ability to enter multiple preparers and translators.
- A dedicated area for including additional information rather than having to add it in the margins.
- A supplemental page for the preparer/translator.
An Enhanced Form I-9
The revised Form I-9 was designed to be completed easily on a computer, according to a USCIS news release. The enhancements available in the new form include:
- Drop-down lists and calendars for filling in dates.
- On-screen instructions for each field.
- Easy access to the full instructions.
- An option to clear the form and start over.
In addition to these enhancements, the new form also has the ability to generate a quick response (QR) code when the employer prints the completed form. The QR code can be ready by most QR readers, according to the agency’s news release.
Check Your Electronic I-9 System for Compliance
If you use an electronic I-9 system to process your employee’s Form I-9s at your organization, check with your vendor to ensure it will comply with the new Form I-9 requirement in January 2017. PreCheck’s I-9Ensure software, for example, will be integrated with the new Form I-9 in early January to help our clients comply with the new requirement. Every vendor is different, so make sure the system you use has a plan in place to comply with the law.
If you you do not have an electronic I-9 system, the revised Form I-9 can be downloaded from the USCIS website. There is also a paper-only version available from the website, which is intended to be printed and to be completed by hand only. Of course, this means you won’t benefit from the forms enhancements mentioned above. While the deadline to implement the new form is in January 2017, employers can begin using 11/14/2016 N version immediately.