On May 29, 2012, AGC submitted comments to the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Citizenship and Immigration Services division (USCIS) regarding proposed changes to Form I-9, the Employment Eligibility Verification Form. Employers must complete Form I-9 to document that they have verified the identity and employment authorization of each new employee hired after Nov. 6, 1986. The form must be completed for both citizens and non-citizens.
USCIS proposed several changes to the form and requested feedback on the proposed changes from employers and other stakeholders. Generally, the changes include expanded instructions, a new layout, new optional employee data fields including fields for an email address and telephone number, and other notable changes.
AGC applauded USCIS on its efforts to make Form I-9 easier to understand. However, with specific regard to the construction industry, AGC made the following recommendations:
- Make the Spanish version of Form I-9 available for use throughout the United States, not just in Puerto Rico;
- Clarify, on the form itself in addition to including in the instructions, circumstances that would result in the completion of section three of the form with regard to the re-verification and re-hiring of employees; and
- Extend the window of time allowed for employers to input data from Form I-9 into the E-Verify system.
In addition, AGC asked USCIS to clarify a few additional changes to the form such as the purpose for collecting an employee’s email address and phone number, whether the employee should use personal contact information or contact information for his or her new employer, and up-front clarification on the length of time employers should maintain the forms.
Employers should continue using the current form until USCIS has published a revised form. AGC will provide further information when available.
For more information on Form I-9 and immigration compliance for employers, visit AGC’s Labor and HR Topical Resources webpage or www.USCIS.gov/I-9central.