January 30th, 2017 | Debbie Lamb, Sterling Talent Solutions
The Revised Form I-9: Your Additional Questions Answered
Sterling recently hosted the “Revised Form I-9” webinar to walk attendees through the changes made to Form I-9 (v. 11/14/16 N). Our presenters included Dave Basham, Form I-9 and E-Verify Subject Matter Expert (SME) from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), and Patricia Hanley, Director of Product Management at Sterling.
Effective January 22, 2017, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) requires that all U.S. employers use the revised Form I-9 (v. 11/14/16 N) for all new hires. Copies of the revised Form I-9 and instructions are available in English and Spanish, and can be downloaded directly from I-9 Central.
USCIS also introduced their fillable version of Form I-9, which is equipped with additional features such as drop-down lists and calendars, fields validations, and field instructions to guide employees and employers when completing the document on a computer. When the fillable version of Form I-9 is used, the employer is still required to print the form to complete wet signatures. Please note, an I-9 service partner, like Sterling, provides the employer with tools to reduce manual processing, and further eliminates the need to use paper by giving access to complete Form I-9 electronically – with electronic signatures.
Please review the top 6 questions asked by our audience during our most recent webinar below. You can also access additional questions from our November 2016 article: The Revised Form I-9: Top 10 Questions Answered.
- If the employee does not indicate N/A when required in Section 1, can the employer add it for him/her?
Per the M-274, the employee is responsible for the accurate completion of Section 1. If the employer, recruiter, or referrer for a fee (“employer”) discovers an error in Section 1 of an employee’s Form I-9, the employer should ask the employee to correct the error.
Please note, employers and/or their authorized representative may only correct errors made in Sections 2 or Section 3 of Form I-9.
- Am I required to use the fillable version of Form I-9?
- Employers have the option to use the USCIS fillable form, use a paper system, an electronic system or a combination of paper and electronic systems to complete and store Form I-9. Per USCIS, “the system used to generate and store the electronic Form I-9 also must comply with regulations found at 8 CFR 274a.2 (e)-(i). See pages 28-29 of the Handbook for Employers (M-274) for additional information.”
- Can Form I-9 be completed before the employee starts working for pay?
- Yes. An employee may complete Section 1 before his or her first day of work for pay, as long as he or she has accepted an offer of employment.
- Do I have to provide the employee with a copy of the Form I-9 instructions every time?
- Yes. Per USCIS, the employer must ensure that all pages of the instructions and the List of Acceptable Documents are available, either in print or electronically, to all employees completing Form I-9.
- Do I have to complete the revised I-9 for my current employees?
- No. You are not required to complete Form I-9 again for current employees. After January 21, 2017, employers must use the most recent version of Form I-9 (v. 11/14/16 N) for all new employees and any Section 3 re-verifications.
- When will the ‘M-274: Handbook for Employers’ be updated?
- USCIS is in the process of updating the handbook and has advised employers to refer to the new Form I-9 instructions for the most up-to-date information. You can subscribe to I-9 Central to receive alerts. The most recent version of the M-274 can be accessed on I-9 Central.
Benefits of an Integrated Form I-9/E-Verify Solution
Sterling offers an integrated Form I-9/E-Verify solution allowing for multiple hiring workflows for in person or remote submission, date integration and storage services. The solution remembers the rules, so an HR professions or company executives don’t have to. The platform is an easy-to-use, self-service paperless solution that supports the updated Form I-9. It works with a simple interface which guides the user throughout each step of the form completion process and has a seamless, compliant integration with E-Verify. The tool sends reminders for expiring work authorizations, awaiting social security numbers and receipts. Most importantly, the solution is mobile-enabled, secure and fully compliant with USCIS laws.
When it comes to your Form I-9 needs Sterling is here to help. If you missed our webinar, you can listen to it On-Demand. This program has been pre-approved for 1 SHRM credit hour and submitted to the HRCI for pre-approval. The webinar covers how to avoid common mistakes when completing a Form I-9, requirements for form requirements, information for form storage and retention and examples of Form I-9 non-compliance that have resulted in significant fines.
This publication is for informational purposes only and nothing contained in it should be construed as legal advice. We expressly disclaim any warranty or responsibility for damages arising out this information. We encourage you to consult with legal counsel regarding your specific needs. We do not undertake any duty to update previously posted materials.