ICE has announced that its flexibility regarding the physical presence requirements for I-9 inspection will be extended for another 30 days, until June 18, 2020 due to continued COVID-19 precautions. The terms and details of this flexibility remain the same.
Basically, eligible employers may continue to inspect Section 2 documents remotely (e.g., over video link, fax, or email). Once normal operations resume, all employees who were onboarded remotely must report to their employer within three business days for in-person verification.
This flexibility applies to employers and workplaces that are operating remotely. If there are employees physically present at a work location, no flexibility is being implemented. ICE has said, however, that DHS will evaluate on a case-by-case basis situations where newly hired employees or existing employees are subject to COVID-19 quarantine or lockdown protocols. Where the new flexibility may not apply, employers may continue to designate authorized representatives to act on their behalf to review documents in person.
ICE is also granting an additional 30 days to the original 60-day extension of time to respond to Notices of Inspection (NOIs) that were issued in March 2020.
ICE notes that employers are required to monitor DHS and ICE websites for additional updates on when extensions will terminate and normal operations resume.
If you have any questions about Form I-9 Employment Verification and E-Verify requirements, especially changes during the COVID-19 pandemic, Jackson Lewis attorneys are available to assist.