DHS Announcement: New Form I-9 and Virtual Options

Get the latest on the new Form I-9 and the changes to virtual inspection requirements, including who qualifies and when you can start.

Staying Up-to-Date with I-9 Guidelines

On July 21, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced three major updates that will affect how employers handle their Form I-9 processes moving forward. Here are the major changes that were announced: 

  1. Virtual inspections: On July 21, 2023, DHS announced a final rule which provides qualifying employers an “optional alternative procedure” (i.e., a virtual process) for examining identity and employment authorization documents presented by employees for the Form I-9. This new virtual option can be used by eligible employers starting August 1, 2023. The optional procedure has both pros and cons for internal HR teams looking to satisfy their I-9 requirements and there are conditions for eligibility.

  2. New Form I-9: DHS also announced that they will publish the new Form I-9 version on August 1, 2023, which will include a new checkbox for indicating that documentation was examined using the new alternative procedure. Employers must begin using this form version no later than November 1, 2023. In other words, employers have a grace period until October 31, 2023, where they can continue to use the 10/21/19 version of the form. 

  3. COVID-19 cleanup: And last but not least, certain employers may also be able to use the new virtual verification process to satisfy the physical inspection requirement associated with their COVID-19 virtual I-9s if certain conditions are met. You may recall that these reinspections must be completed by August 30, 2023. 

Since this is such big news and the changes may be hard for employers to keep up with, we recently hosted a webinar where we discussed these announcements and their possible ramifications. John Fay, our self described I-9 enthusiast and subject matter expert, led the discussion and answered questions from attendees. 

Click the link below to view the webinar on demand. 



If you have any questions about managing your I-9s for your organization, take a look at our I-9 HQ suite of services, or learn more by downloading our HR Checklist for I-9 Enforcement.

The information provided is intended as general guidance and is not intended to convey any tax, benefits, or legal advice. For information pertaining to your company and its specific facts and needs, please consult your own tax advisor or legal counsel.  Equifax Workforce Solutions provides services that can help employers reduce their compliance risks. Details on our provision of these services and related support will be contained in your services agreement. Links to sources may be to third party sites. We have no control over and assume no responsibility for the content, privacy policies or practices of any third party sites or services.

About the Author

John Fay

Job Title: Director of Product Strategy

John Fay is an attorney and technologist with a deep applied knowledge of business immigration, I-9, and E-Verify rules and procedures. During his 20-plus-year career, he has worked closely with corporations, educational institutions, and government agencies on a variety of U.S. immigration and I-9/E-Verify issues, often in connection with the use of software and case management technology. He is a frequent speaker on corporate immigration compliance, presenting at various employment and immigration conferences throughout the U.S. During the past decade, he has spoken in more than 300 live and virtual presentations on I-9 and E-Verify topics, often serving as the moderator. He is also a prolific writer on both  I-9 and E-Verify, authoring more than 500 articles for human resources professionals and related associations.