Proposed Changes for the Form I-9

The current Form I-9 is set to expire on October 31 of this year, and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has created a proposed draft of the new form. This is not the final version, and DHS is allowing public comments on these changes until May 31.

Cadient will add the new version of the form to its baseline library and make updates to the Onboarding solution once the final version has been published.

What’s new?

These proposed updates to the Form I-9 are intended to simplify the process and provide more clarification.

  • Sections 1 and 2 will be reduced to a single page instead of two separate pages.
  • Section 3 (Rehire & Reverification) will be a separate stand-alone section accessible only if needed.
  • Instructions to be reduced from 15 to 7 pages and users will be directed to the M-274 Handbook for Employers with guidance for completing the Form I-9 and I-9 Central website to address further questions.
  • List of Acceptable Documents will include a web link to the regulations for List C documents.
  • Additional emphasis on what constitutes discrimination with respect to the I-9.
  • Fields that are not applicable may be left blank (“N/A” is not required).

Form I-9 Process Changes

The DHS has also made some post-pandemic changes to the I-9 process for employers:

Expired documents are no longer acceptable for identity and work eligibility authorization as of May 1, 2022.

If expired documents were presented during the period of May 2, 2020 – April 30, 2022, employers must update the Form I-9 by July 31, 2022, and inspect the current document or another document from the same list. (This reverification process is only required if the employee is still working for the employer.)

Remote inspections of documents for employees who don’t report to a physical office are set to expire on April 30, 2022. It remains to be seen whether this will be extended or if employers will have to begin live, in-person onboarding as of May 1, 2022. 

As a reminder, remote verification is only allowed for remote workers. Employers must review I-9 documents in person for those who work on-site.

Resources

For more information, refer to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) I-9 Central webpage. 

The proposed draft version of the new Form I-9 is located here as a reference, and comments may be submitted on the U.S Government’s Federal Register website.

 

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Dana Wazny

Legal Analyst, Product Compliance