The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services or USCIS, recently released a new I-9 handbook for employers. The complete updated 65-page I-9 handbook is available here. The new guide puts special emphasis on timeliness, name changes and an expanded FAQ section.
The new handbook is especially important because ICE, the Immigrations and Customs Enforcement agency, has implemented more I-9 audits and increased enforcement actions against employers, rather than focusing on undocumented workers. In early 2011, ICE announced an immediate “blitz” of simultaneous I-9 audits of 500 different companies, to begin the next day.
The updated handbook reminds employers that an employee must not complete the I-9 until after a job offer has been accepted. The first section of the I-9 can be completed any time between the acceptance and the employee’s first day of work, however, it should be completed no later than the first day of work. The employee has three business days to complete the documentation section of the I-9 form. The new handbook clarifies that the first day of work does not count toward the three business days. An employee who starts work on Monday must complete Section 1 of the I-9 on Monday, and Section 2 by Thursday.
When an employee changes his or her (more…)
Effective May 21, 2009 companies entering into new federal contracts will have to use E-Verify to double-check the immigration and legal work status of new employees. This deadline has been delayed from January 15, 2009.
The Office of Management and Budget or OMB recently extended the deadline after a request by the SHRM, or Society of Human Resource Management.
President Obama’s Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel sent a memo to all federal agencies, suggesting that they delay effective dates of any regulations introduced during the last few months of the Bush Administration. SHRM had partnered with other business organizations to fight the new regulation in court.
The Department of Justice concurred with the SHRM request to delay the deadline. Although a federal district court judge in Maryland must review the delay, it seems certain to be approved.
According to an interim rule that was published by the USCIS in December, 2008, employers were required to begin using the form on February 2, 2009. That deadline has now been delayed by 60 days.
According to unnamed sources at the USCIS, the delay will provide adequate time to complete a full review of the new form and the employment verification requirements. A notice of the delay will appear in the Federal Register.
Beginning January 14, 2009, a new rule requires federal contractors to use an electronic system like E-verify to check the immigration status and employment eligibility of every new employee, and old employees on certain sensitive federal projects.
A suit filed by SHRM, the Society for Human Resource Management, seeks to overturn that law. SHRM has filed a federal suit with four other employer organizations to block the rule. In addition to SHRM, the December 23, 2008 suit was filed on behalf of the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, Associated Builders and Contractors, American Council on International Personnel and the HR Policy Association.
SHRM has asked the Bush administration to withdraw the proposed rule from consideration. The administration has declined, however, and employers should continue to use E-verify to comply with the law.