Compliance Update

New I-9 Form Released

Posted on February 7, 2020

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has released a revised version of the Form I-9 (Employment Eligibility Verification). Employers must begin using the new version by May 1, 2020.


The Form I-9 is used to verify a new hire's identity and work authorization. All employers must ensure that each employee properly completes the I-9 at the time of hire. The form is broken out into multiple sections:

Section Name

Section Overview

Completion Deadline

Section 1

Employee must attest that they are authorized to work in the U.S.

The employee's first day of work for pay

Section 2

Employee must present certain identity and work authorization documents. The employer must examine the document(s) to determine whether they reasonably appear to be genuine and relate to the employee. Employers must record the document number(s) here.

Within 3 business days

Section 3

If an employee's employment authorization expires, they must present new or updated document(s) and the employer must examine and record the document number(s) here. Employers may also be required to complete this section when rehiring a former employee, depending on how much time has passed.

No later than the date employment authorization expires

List of Acceptable Documents

To complete Section 2, the employee must either present one document from List A; or one document from List B and one document from List C. Employers cannot ask for specific documents.

This section does not need to be completed. It's for informational purposes only.

What is different in the new version of the form?

This new version contains minor changes to the form and its instructions:

Changes to form:

  • The Country of Issuance field in Section 1 and the Issuing Authority field (when selecting a foreign passport) in Section 2 are revised to add Eswatini and Macedonia, North per those countries' recent name changes. Note: This change is only visible when completing the fillable Form I-9 on a computer.

Changes to instructions:

  • Clarifications were made to who can act as an authorized representative on behalf of an employer.
  • The USCIS website addresses were updated.
  • Clarifications were made on acceptable documents for Form I-9.
  • The process for requesting paper Forms I-9 was updated.
  • The Privacy Notice was updated.

Compliance Recommendations:

USCIS says employers should begin using the new version now, but may continue using the prior version (Rev. 07/17/2017 N) until April 30, 2020. After that date, employers must use the new form with the 10/21/2019 version date for all new hires. The version date can be found in the lower-left corner of the form. You can find the new version here and in the New Hire Paperwork section of HR411®.

Note: Employers do not have to complete a new I-9 for employees that have completed a prior version, although updates may be necessary when employment authorization expires (see Section 3 of the Form).


Find us on Apple Podcasts and Google Play Music

Subscribe to our small business podcast, HR{preneur}®. In 15 minutes or less, each episode provides the insight you need in order to tackle day-to-day workplace issues.

Listen now