DHS has today, July 25, 2023, published a new Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Form. USCIS has made significant changes to the form and its instructions, including a checkbox to indicate that an employee’s Form I-9 documentation was examined using a DHS-authorized alternative procedure. USCIS has stated that the “newly updated Form I–9 contains myriad revisions to the form and its instructions to streamline these materials and reduce employer and employee burden associated with the form.”
The new version of Form I-9 [with a version date of “(Rev. 08/01/23)”] will be available for use from August 1, 2023. Employers may use the current version of Form I-9 (Rev. 10/21/19) until October 31, 2023. After October 31, 2023, the prior version of Form I-9 will be obsolete and no longer valid for use. Beginning November 1, 2023, employers who fail to use Form I-9 (Rev. 08/01/23) may be subject to all applicable penalties.
The new Form I-9 will contain two sections and two supplements:
- Section 1 of the form continues to collect identifying information about the new hire and requires the employee to attest whether they are a U.S. citizen, noncitizen national, lawful permanent resident, or noncitizen authorized to work in the United States.
- Section 2 of the form continues to collect identifying information about the employer and information regarding the employee’s identity and employment authorization.
- Supplement A, Preparer and/or Translator Certification for Section 1 (formerly at the bottom of Section 1), is completed when employees have preparers and/or translators assist them in completing Section 1 of Form I-9.
- Supplement B, Reverification and Rehire (formerly Section 3), is primarily used to verify the continued employment authorization of the employee and for other changes.
USCIS will implement certain changes on the newly updated Form I-9 and form instructions, including the following:
Changes to the Actual Form I-9:
- Reduces Sections 1 and 2 to a single-sided sheet. While the new form does not remove any previous fields, it merges multiple fields into fewer fields when possible.
- Moves the Section 1 Preparer/Translator Certification area to a separate, standalone supplement (Supplement A).
- Moves the Section 3 Reverification and Rehire area to a separate, standalone supplement (Supplement B) for use in a rehire or reverification situation.
- Removes use of “alien authorized to work” in Section 1 and replaced it with “noncitizen authorized to work.” USCIS has also clarified the difference between “noncitizen national” and “noncitizen authorized to work.”
- Ensures the form can be filled out on tablets and mobile devices.
- Removes certain features to ensure the form can be downloaded easily. This also removes the requirement to enter “N/A” in certain fields.
- Updates the notice at the top of the Form I-9 that explains how to avoid discrimination in the Form I-9 process.
- Revises the Lists of Acceptable Documents page to include some acceptable receipts, as well as guidance and links to information on automatic extensions of employment authorization documentation.
- Adds a box that eligible employers must check if the employee’s Form I-9 documentation was examined under a DHS-authorized alternative procedure rather than by physical examination.
Changes to Form I-9 Instructions:
- Reduces length of instructions from 15 pages to 8 pages.
- Adds definitions of key actors in the Form I-9 process.
- Streamlines the steps each actor takes to complete their section of the form.
- Adds instructions for use of the new checkbox for employers who choose to examine Form I-9 documentation under an alternative procedure.
- Removes the abbreviations charts and relocates them to the M-274, Handbook for Employers: Guidance for Completing Form I-9.
DHS further clarifies that, employers do not need to complete the new Form I-9 (Rev. 08/01/23) for current employees who already have a properly completed Form I-9 on file, unless reverification applies after October 31, 2023.
Starting on August 1, 2023, employers may download the new Form I-9 (Rev. 08/01/23) from the USCIS website. For now, the form can be found at https://www.govinfo.gov/content/pkg/FR-2023-07-25/pdf/2023-15667.pdf.
The release of the new I-9 form is part of the changes announced by DHS, including publication of a final rule that will provide eligible employers a new optional alternative procedure to the in-person physical document examination method that employers have followed as part of the Form I-9 process.
If you have any questions about Form I-9 or E-Verify processes or compliance, please reach out to your Jackson Lewis attorney. We will continue to monitor this situation and provide updates as they become available.