New Form I-9: What Does This Mean for Employers
- Generated on the smart form for use by employers. Use of the QR code is not required, but it can be helpful for record retention and tracking purposes. If using a combination of paper and the smart version, the employer will want to make sure the QR codes on each page match if the forms are stored electronically using this feature.
- All sections where a signature is required have been amended to read, "Today's Date," rather than "Date." It is important to always current date the form, both at the time of signing and/or at the time of correction.
- Signatures on both the smart and paper versions must be original, and the form itself does not adhere to electronic signature requirements.
- Amended to read, "Other last names used," rather than "other names used." Nicknames are not required on the Form I-9.
- The smart version asks lawful permanent residents (box 3) and aliens with temporary work authorization (box 4) to select "Alien" or "USCIS" to distinguish the type of Registration Number (Alien# or USCIS#) assigned to them. This is not prompted on the paper version, but can be written, if applicable.
- There is a new box selection for using a preparer/translator. On the smart version, if the box indicating the use of a preparer/translator is selected, the form will automatically display an additional field for indicating how many preparer/translators were used. If more than one preparer/translator was used, more certification pages will appear automatically. A separate paper version for additional preparer/translator certifications is available where there is no access to the smart version.
- Employee's name automatically populates at the top of page 2 when the employee completes Section 1 of the smart version. Employers using the paper version are reminded to complete these boxes when completing Section 2.
- The smart version will enable the List A, B, and C drop-down options based on the employee's box selection in Section 1. Then, when the employer enters the presented document(s) in List A, or Lists B and C, the fields that should no longer be completed will auto-populate with "N/A." For example:
The revisions to the Form I-9, including the newly enabled "smart" functionality, should aid employers in improved compliance and understanding of the I-9. Employers are cautioned, however, that the smart version of the new form does not comply with the regulatory guidelines for electronic I-9 completion and storage, and the form does not provide an electronic signature feature. If an employer wishes to implement a compliant electronic I-9 system, the vendor should be carefully vetted with the assistance of experienced immigration counsel. Employers are encouraged to contact their legal counsel with any questions or concerns about the new Form I-9 implementation process.