ICE Announces Alternative Documentation Inspection Procedures for E-Verify Employers

At a Glance

The U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has announced it will allow alternative documentation inspection procedures for employers enrolled and in good standing in the E-Verify program, starting on Aug. 1, 2023.


All employers are required to complete a Form I-9 for every person hired for employment after Nov. 6, 1986. Completion of this form has traditionally required employers or their authorized representatives to examine originals of an employee’s identity and employment authorization documents, in the physical presence of the employee, within three business days of hire.

As part of a desire to increase flexibility given the changing workplace environment after the pandemic to accommodate remote positions, ICE, starting Aug. 1, 2023, will allow remote review of employee documents during I-9 completion for certain employers. Remote document inspection will only be available to employers enrolled in E-Verify, and only at locations where the employer is using E-Verify.

What This Means

In order to utilize this alternative procedure, the following steps need to be followed:

  • Employer must be enrolled in E-Verify;
  • Employer must examine copies — both front and back — of I-9 documents transmitted by the prospective employee to ensure the documentation presented reasonably appears to be genuine;
  • Employer must conduct a live video interaction with the prospective employee presenting the document(s) to ensure the documentation reasonably appears to be genuine and related to the prospective employee;
  • Employer must complete the corresponding box in Section 2 of the Form I-9 with an edition date of 8/01/2023 or handwrite ‘alternative procedure’ in the Additional Information field in Section 2 if utilizing the Form I-9 with an edition date of 10/21/2019; and
  • Employer must retain clear and legible copies of the document(s) presented by the prospective employee.

What’s Next

The prior issued guidance regarding the Aug. 30 deadline to complete physical document review for I-9s remains in effect for those employee I-9 forms that were completed using remote review during the COVID-19 pandemic. Starting Aug. 1, employers meeting the E-Verify requirement may utilize the above alternative procedure in order to meet this deadline.

Please note, only employers who were enrolled in E-Verify at the time an I-9 was initially completed can utilize this alternative to satisfy post-COVID-19 temporary flexibilities requirements. All other employers must, as of Aug. 1, 2023, resume reviewing all new employees’ I-9 documentation through physical inspection within three business days of the date of hire.

In addition, a new Form I-9 will be released on Aug. 1, 2023. Employers can use the current Form I-9 (edition date 10/21/19) through Oct. 31, 2023. Starting Nov. 1, 2023, all employers must use the new Form I-9, dated Aug. 1, 2023.

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