On July 17, 2017, the U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Service (USCIS) released a revised version of Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification. Employers may use this revised version or continue using Form I-9 with a revision date of 11/14/16 N through September 17, 2017.
Starting on September 18, 2017, employers
must use the revised form with a revision date of 7/17/17 N. USCIS has removed the prior version from its website. The only version that is available on the USCIS website is the new I-9 (7/17/17 N version).
As outlined by USCIS, the following changes were made to the new I-9:
Changes to Form I-9 Instructions:
USCIS changed references to the Office of Special Counsel for Immigration-Related Unfair Employment Practices to its new name, Immigrant and Employee Rights Section.
USCIS removed "the end of" from the phrase "the first day of employment."
USCIS did not explain why it removed the language "end of day" from the I-9 instructions or its consequences. The American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA) Verification and Documentation Liaison Committee has reached out to USCIS to clarify this issue and will provide updates as they are available.
Changes to List of Acceptable Documents on Form I-9:
USCIS added the Consular Report of Birth Abroad (Form FS-240) 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.
USCIS combined all the certifications of report of birth issued by the Department of State (Form FS-545, Form DS-1350, and Form FS-240) into selection C #2 in List C.
USCIS renumbered all List C documents except the Social Security card.
USCIS also revised the Handbook for Employers: Guidance for Completing Form I-9 (M-274) to reflect the changes noted above. In the alert, USCIS noted that the revised version is "easier for employers to navigate."
Where USCIS has historically provided the M-274 to the public in the format of a PDF posted on the USCIS website, USCIS has now organized and posted the content of the M-274 as a web-based resource. Employers still have the option to print the M-274 as a hard copy document (or print as a PDF) but the "printed" M-274 is no longer paginated and lacks a Table of Contents that allows employers to easily find content in the hard copy. USCIS has also provided a "Table of Changes" from the prior version of the M-274.
It is yet unclear how often USCIS will be updating the M-274 and whether the "Table of Changes" will be continually updated to reflect future changes. As such, you should regularly check the current content of the M-274 as it will likely be a more dynamic document (more along the lines of I-9 Central) than it has been in the past.
Anticipated Changes to Form I-9 Relating to the Entrepreneur Parole Rule.
When the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced the delay of the effective date of the final rule on parole for entrepreneurs until 3/14/18, the Federal Register notice (82 FR 31887, 7/11/17) stated that any changes to Form I-9 associated with the new rule would also be delayed until 3/14/18. Though this may mean a new I-9 could be released in March 2018, the DHS also stated its intent to eliminate the rule following notice and comment.