How to Avoid I-9 Violations as an Employer
How Do You Avoid I-9 Violations As An Employer? Discuss Your Legal Case With A Top Chicago Employment Lawyer
The I-9 Form is required to be filed by employers for each employee, both citizen and non-citizen. The form is used to verify the identity and employment authorization of each employee. Each I-9 Form is retained by the employer and needs to be accurate and complete. An employer may be fined for each error on the form and for failing to comply with the requirements. The following are some tips on how to avoid I-9 penalties.
- Make sure that each employee has a completed I-9 Form. Additionally, have an effective filing system for these forms so that they are not misplaced and are accessible when needed.
- Section 1 of the I-9 Form must be completed by the employee after he or she has accepted the job offer and by his or her first day of work. Section 2 of the Form needs to be completed by the employer within three business days of the employee’s first day of work. Having this three-day time limit means that you, as the employer, need to have the employee submit the necessary documentation promptly. It will help to have a procedure in place so that employees submit the documents on time.
- Double-check for missing or incorrect information on the forms. As an employer, you are responsible for accurate forms. Make sure that the employee has dated the forms correctly, signed where needed, checked the proper checkboxes and filled in the correct information. If an error is overlooked and is found out later, you will be fined for each error on the form.
- The employee has the option to submit one document from List A or one document each from List B and List C. You cannot demand that the employee provide you with additional documentation, even if you just trying to be diligent, as this could lead to discrimination allegations.
- If an employee is a non-citizen, it is important that you are aware of their citizenship status throughout the course of his or her employment. It is your responsibility to update the I-9 Form with any changes to citizenship or immigration status and request new documentation from the employee. It would be useful to have some kind of tracking system in place to maintain the order.
- Verify that all the documents submitted by the employee are valid and are the correct documents that are required. Examine all the original documentation at the time it is submitted.
- I-9 Forms need to be retained until the later of three years after the hiring date or one year after the date of employment termination. Failing to retain the forms for the required amount of time or retaining them beyond the required amount of time will result in penalties. Errors on the forms that are retained for longer than they need to be will also expose you to additional penalties.
I-9 compliance is important for your business. Failing to fulfill requirements can result in hefty fines that will add up, so be diligent in completing and maintaining I-9 forms. If you have questions or need further guidance on how to complete and maintain I-9 forms, consult with an experienced attorney at Kriezelman Burton & Associates, LLC.