How to Complete an I-9 Form

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What is an I-9 Form?

An I-9 form is a document that verifies the identity and employment authorization of individuals hired for employment in the United States. It is required by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) for every employee hired after Nov. 6, 1986, regardless of their citizenship or immigration status. The form consists of two sections and two supplements, which must be completed by both the employee and the employer (or their authorized representative) within certain deadlines. The form also requires the employee to present acceptable documents that prove their identity and employment authorization. The employer or authorized representative must examine these documents and record their information on the form.

Filling Out an I-9 Form

The I-9 is made up of two sections:

Section 1: Employee Information and Attestation:

This Section is completed by the employee on or before the first day of employment. The employee provides personal information, such as their full name, date of birth, social security number, address, signature & date. The employee attests-under penalty or perjury-to their citizenship or immigration status & may need to provide additional information upon request.

Section 2: Employer or Authorized Representative Review and Verification:

This section is completed by the employer or an authorized representative. The employer or authorized representative examines the employee's original documents that establish their identity and eligibility to work in the U.S. The employer records the document information, including document title, issuing authority, document number, and expiration date (if applicable). The employer or authorized representative signs and dates this section, certifying that they have reviewed the documents and that they appear to be genuine and relate to the employee.

How to Avoid Common Mistakes and Penalties

The I-9 form may seem simple, but it is easy to make mistakes that can result in fines or other consequences for the employee and the employer. Some of the common mistakes and how to avoid them are:

  • Missing or incorrect information: The employee and the employer must ensure that all the required fields are filled out accurately and completely. Any missing or incorrect information can cause delays or denials of employment authorization or verification. The employee and the employer should review the form carefully before signing it and correct any errors as soon as possible.
  • Late completion or submission: The employee, employer, or authorized representative must complete and sign their respective sections of the form within the specified deadlines. Any delay in completing or submitting the form can result in penalties or loss of employment eligibility. The employee, employer, or authorized representative should keep track of the deadlines and submit the form as soon as possible.
  • Improper document verification: The employer or authorized representative must verify the identity and employment authorization of the employee by examining the documents presented by the employee. The employer must not accept any document that does not reasonably appear to be genuine or relate to the employee. The employer must also not request or require any specific document or more documents than necessary. The employer should follow the List of Acceptable Documents and the instructions provided by the USCIS and avoid any discrimination or unfair practices.

In summary, the I-9 form is an essential tool for confirming the identity and work authorization of individuals employed in the United States. Comprising three sections and two supplements, it necessitates collaboration between employees and employers to provide accurate information and verify identity through acceptable documents. If you have any more questions or need assistance please contact our compliance department at -

Examples of completed I-9 forms

US Citizen

Lawful US Permanent Resident

Non-U.S. Citizen Authorized to work in the U.S