National labor and employment law firm Fisher & Phillips LLP has some excellent tips on I-9 compliance for the hospitality industry.
- The Form I-9 is one of the most effective tools for ensuring that a newly-hired employee is authorized to work in the United States.
- Employers who have heavy turnover, or who have multiple locations, should consider replacing paper I-9 forms with an electronic software program. An electronic I-9 program instantly double-checks that each form is entered completely and accurately. These programs can also be synchronized with the E-Verify federal database, if used or required.
- Employers in the hospitality industry often have more than one location in which they do business. In many cases, individuals are hired at various locations and personnel paperwork is not processed centrally. Your best defense is to make available company-wide training-and-compliance manuals. A written policy dictating the timeline for when an I-9 form should be completed, together with simple but comprehensive instructions, can help ensure that your company’s human resources personnel are completing I-9s in a consistent and accurate manner.
- Because proper training is never going to fully eliminate errors and omissions, employers should conduct a central audit of all I-9 forms at least annually.
- Because of the seasonal nature of many hospitality businesses, it’s common for employees to work for a particular establishment for only part of the year, or for a one-time event such as a convention. This leads to a common scenario where an employee is hired, subsequently terminated, and re-hired during a later season or for a later event. Employers in this situation often assume that since an I-9 form was completed on that employee’s behalf originally, there is no need to re-verify that the employee has authorization to work. But this is not true. An I-9 form completed for a previously-terminated employee is only valid upon re-hire if the documents originally used for the I-9 form are still valid and have not expired. Also, the individual’s original start date must not have been more than three years in the past.
- Pro-actively institute company-wide training and compliance guidelines to ensure that non-compliance at one location doesn’t attract government scrutiny for the entire company. Finally, the I-9 form appears deceptively simple but can be complex. Don’t be afraid to seek assistance in properly completing and retaining I-9 forms.
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Advantages of using FYI Screening for E-Verify:
- As a designated E-Verify service provider, FYI Screening can help you join the growing ranks of those employers who use the E-Verify system to confirm the legal status of workers in the United States.
- Seamless integration into our online background screening system. When you order a background check on an applicant you can easily order an E-Verify check.
- Quick, accurate results
- Confirmation number provides streamlined record-keeping in one convenient online location. This is great for companies with multiple locations.
- Reduces liability by providing an electronic trail for auditing.
For more information about E-Verify, please contact us at 1-800-809-2419 or click here.
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