USCIS Proposes Revisions to Form I-9 for Employment Eligibility Verification and Seeks Public Comment

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) – the government agency that oversees lawful immigration to the United States – recently published a notice in the Federal Register inviting public comment on proposed revisions to the ‘Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification’ that employers must complete for all newly hired employees to verify their identity and authorization to work in the United States. The notice is available at http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2012-03-27/pdf/2012-7340.pdf and the proposed revisions are available at http://www.regulations.gov/#!documentDetail;D=USCIS-2006-0068-0013.

The public comment period runs for 60 days, beginning March 27, 2012 and ending May 29, 2012. The public may comment by visiting http://www.regulations.gov before May 29, 2012 where they will find instructions on how to comment on the proposed revisions to the Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification, which include:

  • More detailed instructions for completion of the form that consist of six pages instead of three pages.
  • A revised layout of the proposed form that consists of two pages instead of one page.
  • Greater clarity concerning the specific information required in each field including specific numbers that clearly illustrate the number of digits the required number should have.
  • New data fields to collect information such as the employee’s email address and telephone number, as well as foreign passport number and country of issuance. 
  • An additional block of fields for entry of document numbers and expiration dates under List A.
  • Easier facilitation of electronic completion and retention, although both the form and the rules will continue to permit manual completion and retention of the Form I-9.
  • A proposed change with respect to the attestation the employer representative must make when signing the Form I-9: “I attest, under penalty of perjury, that (1) I have examined the document(s) presented by the above-named employee, (2) the above-listed document(s) appear to be genuine and to relate to the employee named, and (3) to the best of my knowledge the employee is authorized to work in the United States.”
  • A proposed change to the List of Acceptable Documents with respect to the presentation of a Social Security Account Number card: “A card that includes one of the following restrictions, for example, is not acceptable: (1) NOT VALID FOR EMPLOYMENT; (2) VALID FOR WORK ONLY WITH INS AUTHORIZATION; (3) VALID FOR WORK ONLY WITH DHS AUTHORIZATION.”
  • A referral to the Employer Review and Verification section of the form’s instructions for additional information regarding acceptable receipts.

Since the new proposed Form I-9 is not yet effective, employers should continue to use the current Form I-9 – with a revision date of 08/07/09 and expiring on 08/31/2012 – available on the USCIS’s online Form I-9 resource center at http://www.uscis.gov/I-9central. The USCIS will post information about the new Form I-9 on I-9 Central once it is finalized.

For more information about how employers can maintain Form I-9 and E-Verify electronic employment eligibility verification compliance, visit Employment Screening Resources (ESR) – ‘The Background Check Authority’ and Designated E-Verify Employer Agent – at http://www.esrcheck.com/ or call 415.898.0044. ESR’s Form I-9/E-Verify services page is at: http://www.esrcheck.com/formi9.php.

Sources:
http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2012-03-27/pdf/2012-7340.pdf
http://www.regulations.gov/#!documentDetail;D=USCIS-2006-0068-0013

About Employment Screening Resources (ESR):
Employment Screening Resources (ESR) – ‘The Background Check AuthoritySM – provides accurate and actionable information, empowering employers to make informed safe hiring decisions for the benefit for our clients, their employees, and the public. ESR literally wrote the book on background screening with “The Safe Hiring Manual” by Founder and CEO Lester Rosen. ESR is accredited by The National Association of Professional Background Screeners (NAPBS), a distinction held by a small percentage of screening firms. 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 Employment Screening Resources (ESR), visit http://www.esrcheck.com/ or call 415.898.0044 or 888.999.4474.

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, jobs reports, legal updates, 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.