The U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has announced a ninety-day extension of its temporary policy allowing virtual Form I-9 inspection. This extension will take effect on April 1st and give employers continued flexibility in I-9 verification until August 31st.
Though COVID-19 cases have continued to drop, many companies have not returned to the office or created plans to address in-person verification of 1-9s. Due to this, it appears ICE has decided to extend its policy of flexibility.
ICE encourages employers to begin working through any backlog of I-9s awaiting physical inspection before a return to the office if possible. However, once an employee begins to work in a physical capacity on a predictable basis, the I-9 will need to be physically reviewed within three days regardless of the August 31st deadline.
So, it is important for employers to review their backlog of I-9, if any, and create plans to address them before they begin their return to the office to ensure compliance.