The price for everything has gone up in recent times, and the cost of failing to comply with Form I-9 requirements is no exception. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has raised the fines for Form I-9 civil violations in order to take inflation into account.
The agency made its official announcement last month, and these new fines will take effect for any penalties that are assessed subsequent to October 18th, 2021, for violations that took place after November 2nd, 2021. The increased penalties for paperwork violations include:
The already much higher penalties for knowingly hiring, recruiting, retaining, or referring those without employment authorization have been raised as well. These penalties now include:
Now more than ever before, failing to comply with the requirements for completing Form I-9 can be extremely costly. So, let’s consider the basics of completing Form I-9 – Employment Eligibility Verification. This form administered by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) must be completed in order to verify the identity and employment authorization of every new hire employed in the U.S.
Employers are responsible for completing this form for every new hire, or else they face the risk of the severe penalties given above. In order to complete Form I-9, both employees and employers must complete parts of the form. The Form I-9 contains three distinct sections, which are:
Completing Form I-9 can be difficult, and it requires considerable knowledge and attention to complete correctly. There are many unusual situations that can arise and procedures to remember, and this can lead to costly mistakes. Often these include missing sections or completing them incorrectly, failure to comply with verification of documentation, or missing deadlines.
The best way to stay in compliance and avoid costly civil penalties is to streamline the process with an electronic I-9 management tool. This can guide personnel through the verification process and prevent errors while ensuring documentation is stored properly, and send helpful alerts of upcoming deadlines.