Once again, just as it was about to expire, ICE has announced a further extension of flexibility in its rules related to Form I-9 compliance. This time, the extension will continue through December 31, 2020.
Employers will be able to continue to inspect Section 2 Form I-9 documents virtually (e.g., over video link, by fax, or by email).
ICE has reiterated that the policy applies only to employers with workplaces that are operating remotely and that if employees are physically present at the workplace, no exceptions will be implemented. Whether ICE will be reasonable and assess circumstances on a case-by-case basis is yet to be seen.
Remember that any employees who were onboarded virtually must report for in-person verification once the employer’s normal operations resume (which may be earlier than December 31, 2020) or once the employee is physically present at the work location, whichever is earlier.
If the company does not seem to be eligible for the flexibility, an employer may continue to designate authorized representatives to act on their behalf to conduct in-person review of documents.
With companies in often changing and various stages of returning to workplaces, Jackson Lewis attorneys are available to assist you in determining how the rules apply to your particular circumstances.