Employers must start using the new I-9 form this month

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In July, the U.S. Customs and Immigration Service issued a new Form I-9 for documenting eligibility to work in the U.S. For the time being, employers could use either the new form or the existing I-9 Form (which has a revision date of November 14, 2006). But commencing September 18 2017, employers must start using the revised form, which contains a revision date of 07/17/17.

So how does the new I-9 Form differ from the prior one? The changes are largely non-substantive and will probably not have much effect on how most employers use and complete them:

Revisions to the Form I-9 instructions

  • The name of the Office of Special Counsel for Immigration-Related Unfair Employment Practices was changed to its new name, Immigrant and Employee Rights Section.
  • The phrase “the end of” was removed from “the first day of employment.”

Revisions related to the List of Acceptable Documents

  • The Consular Report of Birth Abroad (Form FS-240) was added to List C. Employers completing Form I-9 on a computer will be able to select Form FS-240 from the drop-down menus available in List C of Sections 2 and 3. E-Verify users will also be able to select Form FS-240 when creating a case for an employee who has presented this document for Form I-9.
  • All the certifications of report of birth issued by the Department of State (Form FS-545, Form DS-1350, and Form FS-240) were combined into selection C #2 in List C.
  • All List C documents except the Social Security card were renumbered. For example, the employment authorization document issued by the Department of Homeland Security on List C changed from List C #8 to List C #7.

Employers are not required to do anything different regarding their existing I-9 forms that were completed before the implementation of the new form. They must continue to follow existing storage and retention rules for any previously completed Form I-9.