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The United States Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has cracked down on companies suspected of hiring illegal workers and greatly increased their number of annual audits. Most recently, the Indian company Infosys was ordered to pay a record $34 million settlement after allegations of systematic visa fraud and abuse of immigration processes. 

Implementing Form I-9 compliance and best practices while limiting your company’s liability is a challenge faced by many employers. To help, DHS has issued a new, more technically adept Form I-9 and posted links to various online resources. As good as these short videos are, I-9 compliance is a complex procedure, and although the videos do a great job in introducing employers to the basics, there are hundreds of technicalities that are not covered in their videos. 

For example, there is a box on Part I of the form for persons who are non-citizen nationals to check. I would venture to guess that 99.9% of employers (and probably most DHS employees) have no idea what a non-citizen national is. Also, many rules for completing I-9 forms are not listed in the law or even in the USCIS regulations. When can an H-1B employee who is changing jobs start working for the new employer? What forms does he have to present to show that he is authorized to be employed for I-9 purposes? These type of questions are not covered in the videos. 

Today, in order to avoid astronomical fines for non-compliance, employers need to be ever so vigilant and diligent in their process. This webinar discussion will include a review of the penalties ICE and Office of Special Counsel (OSC) can impose. Additionally, the webinar will review paper versus electronic I-9 forms and the common missteps employers make in the process.

  • How to conduct a self-audit of your I-9s and I-9 practices
  • Common I-9 completion mistakes to avoid
  • Best practices for filling out the I-9
  • Legally acceptable ways to verify workers’ documentation
  • Form I-9 re-verification requirements for non-U.S. citizens and non-permanent residents
  • How to handle I-9s for returning workers
  • How to complete I-9s for new employees using automatically extended employment authorization documents (EADs)
  • Tips for copying and storing I-9s
  • Whether you should photocopy workers’ supporting documentation
  • Electronic I-9s
  • When it is safe to purge old I-9s
  • Best practices for ensuring that you’re not unknowingly hiring or employing workers not authorized to work in the United States, and what not to do when placing ads seeking employees
  • How to legally walk the line between being vigilant about having workers produce sufficient documentation to back up their assertions that they can legally work here and not overstepping by requesting too much or impermissible information
  • E-Verify – federal program but not mandatory by federal law
  • FAR E-Verify for federal contractors – mandatory
  • States where E-Verify is mandatory

January 21, 2017 is when you, the employer, were expected to be using the new Form I-9.  Are you prepared? If the I-9 forms are not completed correctly, an employer may be fined even if all their employees are legally authorized to work in the U.S. While we hope you won’t be seeing ICE, just in case, check your forms twice. If your form’s wrong, you know the game. The employer shoulders all the blame. 

The most prominent changes to the new form are its “smart” features, which we’ll discuss fully in this webinar. Yet there are a few other subtle, yet important details of note. Join us as we explain the key changes to the newly released version of Employment Eligibility Verification form (“Form I-9”), the updated instructions, penalties related to Form I-9 for non-compliance and what 2017 could hold for employers from an enforcement perspective in light of the Trump-Pence election victory. Finally, the webinar will provide an overview of what to expect next year regarding immigration reform, and specifically worksite enforcement, given that both the U.S. Congress and White House will be controlled by Republicans. What could a new administration mean for your workforce and immigration-related compliance? Whether your employees complete Form I-9 centrally or on the jobsite, this webinar is a must for anyone who is responsible for completing and signing Form I-9.

  • CFOs 
  • Payroll and Accounting managers 
  • Payroll Processing Professionals 
  • Employers and Business Owners 
  • Human Resources Specialists and Managers 
  • E-Verify Users 
  • Payroll Professionals 
  • Tax Professionals
  • Accountant
  • Controllers

Bruce E. Buchanan is a founding partner at Sebelist Buchanan Law PLLC with offices in Nashville and Atlanta, where he primarily represents employers in all aspects of immigration law, with a special emphasis on employer immigration compliance, as well as employment/labor law matters. Additionally, he is "Of Counsel" to Siskind Susser concerning employer immigration compliance matters.

Mr. Buchanan received his law degree from the Vanderbilt University School of Law in 1982. He served as senior trial specialist for the National Labor Relations Board for 20 years. Mr. Buchanan also served for 12 years as Adjunct Professor at William H. Bowen UALR School of Law. He went into private practice in 2003 and formed his own law firm in late 2015.

Mr. Buchanan authors his own blog on employer immigration compliance for, located at and is a monthly contributor to HR Professionals Magazine. He is also the editor of the Tennessee Bar Association's Immigration Law Section Newsletter and past-Chair of the TBA's Immigration Law Section. Mr. Buchanan is admitted to practice in Tennessee, Georgia, Florida, and Arkansas, and before the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth, Sixth, Eighth and D.C. Circuits.

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