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USCIS Issues Revised Form I-9 that Becomes Mandatory on May 7, 2013
On March 26, 2013, the United States Citizen and Immigration Services (USCIS) issued a revised Employment Eligibility Verification Form I-9, which replaces all previous versions of the form. The new Form I-9 is available for immediate use and may be downloaded from USCIS’s website in both English and Spanish. The Spanish version can only be submitted by employers in Puerto Rico. Spanish-speaking employers and employees in the 50 states, Washington, DC, and other U.S. territories may use the Spanish version for reference, but must complete the English version of the form.
Employers must begin using the new Form I-9 beginning on or before May 7, 2013, for all new hires and for re-verifying current employees with expiring employment authorization documentation. However, employers are not required to, and should not, retroactively complete new I-9 forms for any other current employees. Employers who fail to properly complete and retain I-9 forms are subject to civil fines of up to $1,100 per form and, in some cases, criminal penalties.
The new I-9 is nine pages long, including seven pages of instructions and a List of Acceptable Documents. The form itself has been expanded from one page to two pages, and includes new data fields for foreign passport information (where applicable), telephone numbers and e-mail addresses. Please note that the data fields for telephone numbers and e-mail addresses are optional. Because the form is now two pages, we recommend printing the form double-sided to avoid the chance of misplacing part of the form.
USCIS also updated the Handbook for Employers, Guidance for Completing Form I-9 (Employment Eligibility Verification Form) (Form M-274), its companion instruction booklet for the I-9 process. This new Handbook for Employers is also available for download on USCIS’s website.
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