USCIS Redesigns Employment Authorization Document and Certificate of Citizenship

To help strengthen security and combat fraud, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) – the government agency that oversees lawful immigration to the United States – has announced the launch of a redesigned Employment Authorization Document (Form I-766) and Certificate of Citizenship (Form N-560) with new features and enhancements, according to a news release on the USCIS website. The USCIS has already begun issuing the new Employment Authorization Documents (EADs) and will begin using the redesigned certificates on October 30, 2011.

The USCIS hopes that the state-of-the-art technology incorporated into the new documents will deter counterfeiting, obstruct tampering, and facilitate quick and accurate authentication, and the agency anticipates that more than 1 million people will receive the new documents over the next year. The new features of the EAD will help workers, employers, and law enforcement officials to recognize the card as definitive proof of authorization to work in the United States. In addition, the USCIS has employed a more secure and tamper-proof printing process for the redesigned Certificate of Citizenship.

However, although the look and feel of the documents is new, the way in which job applicants apply for and receive them will not change. The USCIS will replace EADs already in circulation as individuals apply for their renewal or replacement while all previously issued EADs remain valid until the expiration date printed on the card. Previously issued Certificates of Citizenship remain valid indefinitely. The USCIS will continue to enhance document security features as technology improves.

The Employment Authorization Document (Form I-766) – a card issued to aliens who are authorized to work temporarily in the United States – is listed under ‘List A’ of ‘Acceptable Documents that Establish both Identity and Employment Authorization’ on the Employment Eligibility Verification Form (Form I-9) that must be filled out for all newly hired workers in the United States. An ‘Anti-Discrimination Notice’ at the top of the Form I-9 reads:

“It is illegal to discriminate against any individual (other than an alien not authorized to work in the United States) in hiring, discharging, or recruiting or referring for a fee because of that individual’s national origin or citizenship status. It is illegal to discriminate against work-authorized individuals. Employers CANNOT specify which documents(s) they will accept from an employee. The refusal to hire an individual because the documents presented have a future expiration date may also constitute illegal discrimination.”

For more information about Form I-9 and the E-Verify electronic employment eligibility verification system, visit Employment Screening Resources (ESR) – a nationwide background check company accredited by the National Association of Professional Background Screeners (NAPBS) and Designated E-Verify Employer Agent – at http://www.esrcheck.com and the ESR Designated E-Verify Employer Agent page  http://www.esrcheck.com/formi9.php.

About Employment Screening Resources (ESR):
Founded in 1997 in the San Francisco, CA area,
Employment Screening Resources (ESR) literally wrote the book on background screening with “The Safe Hiring Manual” by ESR Founder and CEO Lester Rosen. ESR streamlines the screening process and reduces administrative overhead though its proprietary technology solutions.  ESR is accredited by The National Association of Professional Background Screeners (NAPBS®), a distinction held by less than two percent of all screening firms. This important recognition was achieved by successfully passing a third party audit demonstrating compliance with the NAPBS Background Screening Agency Accreditation Program. By choosing an accredited screening firm like ESR, employers know they have selected an agency that meets the highest industry standards. For more information about ESR, visit http://www.ESRcheck.com

About ESR News:
The Employment Screening Resources (ESR) News blog –
ESR News – provides employment screening information for employers, recruiters, and jobseekers on a variety of topics including credit reports, criminal records, data privacy, discrimination, E-Verify, legal risks, negligent hiring, workplace violence, and use of search engines and social network sites for background checks. For more information about ESR News or to send comments or questions, please email ESR News Editor Thomas Ahearn at tahearn@esrcheck.com.

Sources:
http://www.uscis.gov/portal/site/uscis/menuitem.5af9bb95919f35e66f614176543f6d1a/?vgnextoid=338ce8ba05b33310VgnVCM100000082ca60aRCRD&vgnextchannel=a2dd6d26d17df110VgnVCM1000004718190aRCRD
http://www.uscis.gov/files/form/i-9.pdf