A revised Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification, the form that must be completed by all employers to verify the employment eligibility of every new hire, will be introduced on March 8, 2013, according to an advance copy of a notice to be published in the Federal Register the same day. The new form will not be made publicly available until March 8, but the modifications are expected to include the expansion of the Form I-9 from one to two pages (not including the “List of Acceptable Documents” and form instructions), additional data fields (such as the new hire’s email address and phone number), enhanced Form I-9 instructions, and a revised layout.
The new edition of the Form I-9 will be immediately effective upon publication in the Federal Register and will become the only acceptable version of the form as of May 7, 2013. Until then, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has provided a 60-day grace period during which the current version of Form I-9 will remain valid for use in order to “help alleviate the burden that immediate implementation of the newly revised Form I-9 would have imposed on employers.” Therefore, during this 60-day grace period, employers may continue to use the February 2, 2009 and August 7, 2009 versions of the Form I-9.
Employers do not need to complete the new Form I-9 for current employees for whom there is already a properly completed Form I-9 on file, unless re-verification applies.
Ogletree Deakins has been closely following developments regarding the revisions to the Form I-9 since March 2012, when USCIS first published a draft of proposed revisions to the form for public comment.