Form I-9 Completion for Remote Employees

All employees must complete Section 1 of Form I-9 on their first day of work for pay or before they start work if they have accepted an offer of employment.  Section 2 of the I-9 must be completed and signed by the employer within three business days of the employee’s first day of work for pay.  As part of an employer’s completion of Section 2, the employer must physically examine the documentation presented by the employee and record the document title, issuing authority, number(s), and expiration date (if any) of the original documents.  

 Where an employee is hired to work in a remote location, or hired in a location where the employer does not maintain an office, completion of Section 2 can be complicated because of the employer’s obligation to physically examine the employee’s documentation.  The Form I-9, however, contains a built-in solution – Section 2 can be completed by an “authorized representative of the employer,” who can be any agent of the employer – an attorney, a notary, or other person in the remote location willing to act for the employer.  An employer should provide a letter or e-mail to the  individual authorizing them to act on the employer’s behalf with respect to completion of Section 2 of the Form I-9.  The employer may also want to provide the agent with information from the U.S Citizenship and Immigrations Services website on acceptable documents and examining the documents.  If the employer is using a notary as an “authorized representative,” the employer should notify the notary that they need only to sign Section 2, and should not notarize or stamp the Form I-9.

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