Employers are required to fill out, file and keep a copy of a Form I-9, otherwise known as Employment Eligibility Verification form. The Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1986 (IRCA) makes it illegal for employers to hire anyone who is not a legal resident of the United States. To obtain free employment verification is easy, because the one-page form is free to fill out and print.
The first portion of the form should be filled out by the employee. If the employee can not fill this section out, a Preparer/Translator may fill out this portion of the form. The employee must still sign this section on his or her own. The first section needs to be filled out by or on the first day of employment. Note that the employer, not the employee, is held responsible if this section is not filled out in time.
The second section of the form is the Employer Review and Verification portion of Form I-9. This section of the form requires employers to view and record documentation presented by the employee. The employee must present either a document from List A or a combination of documents from List B and List C. Photocopies are not acceptable as forms of documentation. This section must be completed no later than 3 days after employment has begun.
Make copies of the documentation presented by the employee and return them to the employee.
Print the completed form if it was filled out online. Photocopy the completed form if filling out a hard copy, and keep a copy for your records.
- Employers who knowingly hire or continue to employ an illegal immigrant can face civil or criminal charges.
- Employers must keep copies of the form for 3 years or for 1 year after the employee has left.