End of Remote I-9 Capability Makes No Sense and What to Do Now
Updated: Aug 29
DHS has announced that as of July 31, 2003, employers no longer will have the ability to administer I-9s remotely. This makes no sense to employers in the world of remote work. Many employers don't have trained I-9 administrators at locations where remote employees are hired. Employers' frustration is amplified by DHS's newly announced requirement that in addition to no ability to administer I-9 remotely, by August 30, 2023, employers must physically examine all the I-9 documents inspected. We are anxiously awaiting for DHS to issue a new rule that would hopefully fix this situation. Meanwhile, what does an employer do, in additional to tearing their hair out? Options are not great, but not acting is not optional, so here they are, in the order of bad to also not great:
Train new I-9 Administrators at locations where you need them.
Train any employees or contractors you may have at remote locations and designate them as your I-9 agents.
Travel to do I-9s pr bring the new worker to where you have trained -9 administrators
Other remote services, and make sure that they are I-9 administrators, so ask for their training certificates and updated your Corporate Immigration Compliance records;
Ship documents around (the worst!).
Reach out to DHS and let them know all of the above are not viable options and we need the Remote I-9 Capability Back.
Options that are tempting but nor recommended:
Notaries! Not a great idea, unless they receive I-9 administrator training, because notaries are not trained to administer I-9 and ICE requires employer allow only those who have received I-9 training administer I-9s.
Do not ignore the requirements. No matter how preposterous and onerous DHS's requirements are, employers have an obligation to show good faith compliance.
Available resources include:
Government updates: www.uscis.gov
Corporate Immigration Compliance Institute: www.usimmigrationcompliance.com
Mdivani Business Immigration Lawyer