Flexibility in Completing Form I-9
On March 20, 2020, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced that it would allow some flexibility in the Form I-9 requirements for remote workers due to the Coronavirus.
Beginning immediately, employers who hire remote workers and who are taking Coronavirus precautions (travel restrictions, visitor restrictions to worksite, proximity precautions) will not be required to review the employees’ documents in the employee’s physical presence. Employers still must review the Section 2 documents remotely (by video call, fax, email, etc.) within 3 business days of the start of work and keep a copy of the documents.
Once normal operations have resumed, the employer must physically examine the original documents of employees onboarded in this way and enter the following in the Additional Information Box in Section 2:
· “COVID-19” (the reason the physical inspection was delayed)
· Date (the date that the physical documents were examined) and
· “Documents Physically Examined”
Employers and employees have three business days after the resumption of normal operations to comply.
Employers may utilize this practice for up to 60 days from the date of this notice (March 20, 2020) or within 3 business days of the termination of the National Emergency, whichever comes first.
Employers who have employees physically present at the workplace should continue the practice of physically examining presented documents within 3 business days of starting work.