Form I-9 List of Acceptable Documents
The heart of For I-9 and employment eligibility verification is that every worker must present proof of employment eligibility at the time of hire. The employee's evidence of work authorization is documentation of both the employee's identification and work authorization.
Form I-9 indicates on page 5 the List of Acceptable Documents. Excamples of these I-9 acceptable doucments is included in this website. Employers are cautioned however that the documentation part of the I-9 orcess can be a matter for a trained employer supervisor.
The Form I-9 itself is merely the tip of the iceberg of employer employment eligibility verification responsibilites. The Form I-9 is the main cog in the work authorization laws, but merely completing Form I-9 is only the employer's first step in Form I-9 in employment eligibility verification.
Accepting and reviewing documents alone is not sufficient to avoid I-9 liabilities. Form I-9 must be correctly completed, and without any unlawful employer action related to documents presented by the employee or the manner in which the employer reviews the documents presented. The Forms I-9 must be reverified when apporpriate. The employer must properly retain it I-9s for several years. Its I-9s must be available for Immmigration and Custom Enforcement (ICE) audit or invesstigation, and for Department of Labor (DOL) wage and hour audits or investigations. Many states have their own mini-I-9 and mini-E-Verify laws.
The labyrinth of employment eligibility verification and I-9 laws have become a major employer compliance, staffing and regular training matter for all businesses from a WalMart size business to smaller local employers, especially employers with multiple locations.
Employer failure to verify employment eligibility and properly complete and retain I-9 Forms subjects the company to stiff criminal and civil liabilities, including imprisonment, asset forfeiture, and treble damages in RICO lawsuits by competitors. Executives, officers, managers and key employees are liable personally for civil and criminal penalties for I-9 related errors and unlawful employment eligibility verification (EEV) practices.
List of Acceptable Documents
The employee must present and the employer must review the empoyee's evidence of both identity and wotk authorization. Some documents eastablish bot dentity and work authorization--the are List A documents.
Other documents eastbalish only identity--List B documents. And other documents establish only emplyment authorization--List C documents.
The employee may present either a List A documents OR a List B and List C document for I-9 employment eligibility vereification.
There are a number of substitutes for these documents that are acceptable in certain circimstances. Some USCIS Receipts and certain specific visa categories may be accepted for purposes of I-9 acceptable documntation. These are discussed elsewhere in the website.