The United States Department of Homeland Security (DHS) put temporary accommodations during the COVID-19 pandemic. The accommodations regulated the renewal of documents for Form I-9 related to employment authorization in any workplace. This accommodation also permitted employees to present List B documents that had expired between May 1, 2020, and April 30, 2022.
However, as of May 1, 2022, the DHS withdrew that temporary policy. Additionally, the DHS stated that the expired Form I-9s would need to be updated by July 31, 2022.
If the employee presenting the expired List B document no longer works for the employer, no further action is necessary. However, employees who still work for the employer should supply an unexpired document that establishes their identity.
The document could be an unexpired version of the List B document. However, the employee could use a List A record to establish the employee’s employment authorization in addition to their identity.
When the employee presents the updated documentation, the employer finds Section 2 on Form I-9 to fill in the title of the document, the expiration date, and the issuing authority number in the Additional Information Box. Then, the employer’s initials and dates of the changes.
Issuing authorities can extend the validity of expired List B documents. Therefore, employers do not need to take further action with such exceptions.
The recent change means that expired Lists B documents can no longer establish an employee’s identity. However, employers can still digitally review Form I-9 documents until October 31, 2022. This flexibility is available until an employee reports in-person to the workplace on a regular, consistent, or predictable basis or until the flexibility is discontinued.
The flexibility to virtually evaluate Form I-9 documents may become permanent. For example, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services has already stated that the agency would allow reproduced signatures on formal U.S. petition filings to be a permanent policy. In response, the DHS may continue to make reforms in the I-9 process.
As this change demonstrates, completing the employment eligibility process and complying with the requirements can be confusing. It is easy to make costly mistakes because hiring personnel do not understand the process. However, electronic I-9 management tools make avoiding these problems easy. These tools guide employers through the employment verification process and ensure hiring personnel know which documents are suitable to prove work authorization.
Automate your employment eligibility verification today with the ensured compliance of I-9 Compliance.