This information is being provided to OPEESA members as a service from Nancye M. Combs, AEP*SPHR, a Certified Senior Professional in Human Resources and President/CEO of HR Enterprise, Inc.
The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service – USCIS has been busy creating yet another new I-9 Form that we must use. This is important to you because the current administration in Washington has placed a very high priority on immigration issues.
All employers must begin using this new I-9 Form no later than September 18, 2017. Access this site for the new form: https://www.uscis.gov/i-9 USCIS has changed the list of documents that new employees may use to complete the form.
You should know that:
- The I-9 Form must be completed within three days of employment.
- The I-9 Form must be retained for three years from the first day of employment or one year from the last day of employment, whichever is later. That means a minimum of eleven years, if they employee stays ten years.
- Employers must keep these records accessible for inspection; but, keep them locked because they may have the kind of information that could be used for identity theft.
- Officials from the Department of Homeland Security, the Department of Labor, and the Immigrant and Employee Rights Section of the Department of Justice may inspect an employer’s records and they must be produced within three days of a request.
- Failure to comply with these requirements can result in civil and criminal penalties.
- Some states have enacted laws which require employers to use the e-Verify program within three days of an employee beginning work. You can check your state at this site: https://www.justifacts.com/e-verify-state-map/
- If you are operating in an e-Verify State, the failure to comply with that requirement can result in the state temporarily suspending an employer’s ability to act as an employer which, in essence, would shut down your operation.
When USCIS calls on you, they are serious about this requirement whether you have one employee or 10,000, and we never want to take this requirement lightly.