Employment Verification

The Department of Justice discussed the limit of how employers can verify employment related documents.

The anti-discrimination provision of the Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) prohibits unfair documentary practices during the employment eligibility verification (Form I-9) process. In general, employers are not allowed to request more or different documents than are required to establish a worker's identity and eligibility to work in the United States or reject documents that appear to be reasonably genuine upon their face.

Employers must accept all documents that are sufficient to complete the form as long as they appear reasonably genuine on their face and relate to the employee. For example, all individuals who possess a driver's license and unrestricted Social Security card may present those documents to satisfy Form I-9 requirements. Employers may not require aliens to produce "green cards" or United States citizens who appear "foreign" to produce birth certificates. Instead, it is the employee's choice which of the acceptable Form I-9 documents to present.

For further information on the employment eligibility verification (Form I-9) process, visit I-9 Central at: www.uscis.gov/I-9Central.

An anti-discrimination notice and OSC's contact information is listed on both the Form I-9 and its Instructions, and the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service’s (USCIS) Handbook for Employers: Instructions for Completing Form I-9 (M-274).

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