Attention Employers: Remote I-9 Verification Extended

Nov 7, 2022
Applicant Tracking, HR and Recruiting Industry Information

COVID I-9 Compliance Flexibility Extended to July 31, 2023

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) extended the verification flexibility related to Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification, due to continued precautions related to COVID-19. This temporary rule was set to expire October 31, 2022.

The temporary rule was first announced in March 2020 and has been extended several times since then as the pandemic has continued to impact workplaces. The temporary rule affects employees hired on or after April 1, 2021 who work exclusively in a remote setting due to COVID-19 related precautions. In such cases, the employer is temporarily exempt from I-9 physical inspection rules until the employee undertakes non-remote employment on a regular, consistent, or predictable basis, or the extension of the flexibilities related to such requirements is terminated, whichever is earlier. (ICE)

Which I-9 form should I use right now?

Until further notice, employers should keep using the Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification, though it was originally due to expire October 31, 2022. DHS will publish a Federal Register notice when the new version of the Form I-9 becomes available.

How can I verify employment eligibility remotely?

Remote verification options include: video link (Zoom, Teams), FaceTime, fax or email.

Since the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, USCIS has allowed employers to remotely review — by Zoom, video chat, FaceTime, fax, or other electronic means — the identity and work-authorization documents that are necessary for workers’ Forms I-9, during the hiring and re-verification process. Fisher Phillips

Can I do I-9 verification through ApplicantStack?

Yes! ApplicantStack integrates with Verified First, a full-service background check provider. Verified First provides all background check services including I-9 verification through Tracker-I-9.

Every U.S. employer must properly complete a Form I-9 for each new hire working in the United States prior to finalizing the onboarding process. This form is an important part of adding a new employee to your team, and it isn’t always straightforward. Simple inconsistencies or even neglecting to enter “N/A” where required can have big consequences. Paperwork or technical violations can potentially cost your business anywhere between $234 to $2,332 per employee. Verified First

Employers Must Document Their Onboarding Process

Employers  who take advantage of the remote verification rule must provide documentation of their onboarding process and remote work policy. If you haven’t created a formal onboarding process, learn how here: The Onboarding Process – Steps and Checklist. The onboarding process should also be included in the employee handbook. For a complete guide to creating and updating your employee handbook (including a template with a sample remote work policy) see How to Write and Update Your Employee Handbook + Template.

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