Prepare for the end of virtual I-9 verification.

If your organization has been taking advantage of the relaxed COVID-era rule to verify new hires' I-9 documents via electronic means, start planning now to perform an in-person review of all those documents.

Since March 2020, the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has allowed employers with remote operations to defer the physical inspection of driver's licenses, Social Security cards and other documents related to I-9 forms. Instead, you could examine documents remotely via video, email, etc.

ICE has continually extended this remote I-9 program every few months. It's now set to end on August 31, 2021. And, as more COVID restrictions fall away, this could be the final extension.

Note that this ICE policy allows employers to defer the in-person documents review requirement--not eliminate it.

ICE's original memo says that once the deadline ends (or an organization resumes "normal operations"), all employees who were onboarded using remote verification must report to their employer within three business days for in-person verification. (ICE may add further clarification on this reverification requirement as the deadline gets...

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