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16 January 20243 minute read

USCIS releases updated Form I-9: Top points for Puerto Rico employers

Effective November 1, 2023, all US employers must use the new Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification, as required by the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).

The revised I-9 form must be used for all new hires and rehires, including citizens and non-citizens. Failing to comply with I-9 requirements may put your company at risk of fines or even criminal charges.

Federal law requires that every employer that recruits, refers for a fee, or hires an individual for employment in the US must complete Form I-9. Employers are required to:

  • Have a completed Form I-9 on file for each person on their payroll who is required to complete the form
  • Retain and store Forms I-9 for 3 years after the date of hire, or for 1 year after employment is terminated – whichever is later – and
  • Make their forms available for inspection if requested by authorized US government officials from the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Department of Labor, or Department of Justice.

The revised Form I-9:

  • Reduces Sections 1 and 2 to a single-sided sheet. Page 1 of the new form includes both Section 1, “Employee Information and Attestation,” and Section 2, “Employer Review and Verification.” It also includes a checkbox allowing employers to indicate that they examined Form I-9 documentation remotely under a DHS-authorized alternative procedure rather than via physical examination (for employers enrolled in E-Verify and in good standing)
  • Is designed to be fillable using tablets and mobile devices. However, the form still needs to be printed and signed by the employee and the employer, unless using an electronic Form I-9 system
  • Moves Section 1, “Preparer/Translator Certification Area,” to a separate, standalone supplement that employers can provide to employees when necessary (Supplement A, “Preparer and/or Translator Certification for Section 1”)
  • Moves Section 3, “Reverification and Rehire,” to a standalone supplement that employers can print when rehire occurs or reverification is required (Supplement B, “Reverification and Rehire”)
  • Revises the “Lists of Acceptable Documents” page to include some acceptable receipts, as well as guidance and links to information on automatic extensions of employment authorization documentation (Page 2, “Lists of Acceptable Documents”). This refers to the list of acceptable and unexpired documentation that establishes an employee’s identity and employment authorization
  • Reduces form instructions from 15 pages to 8 pages, streamlining the process and informing employers of the requirements in a more efficient manner

The revised I-9 form and instructions are available here. Employers located in Puerto Rico may complete the Spanish-language version of Form I-9 instead of the English-language version. Any employer may use the Spanish-language form and instructions as a translation tool.

It is not necessary to re-do I-9 forms for current employees, although it is highly recommended to perform a self-audit to ensure ongoing compliance with regulations.

If you have any questions about the new I-9 form, self-audits, or other immigration related matters, please contact the authors or your usual DLA Piper attorney. Add body copy in here and check formatting