The End is Near: COVID-19 List B Document Temporary Policy Ends

By: Dawn Lurie, Matthew Parker, and Amber Olson

On July 22, 2022, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) issued a reminder regarding the Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) termination of the COVID-19 temporary policy allowing employers to accept expired List B documents for the Form I-9. As of May 1, 2022, employers must only accept unexpired List B documents.

As discussed in previous blogs, DHS adopted a temporary policy at the onset of COVID-19 in 2020 to allow expired List B documents to be accepted for Form I-9 purposes in response to the many difficulties individuals experienced with renewing identity documents. Since May 1, 2022, DHS has returned to their original policy which only allows for unexpired List B documents to be used for the Form I-9.

USCIS reminds employers that they are required to update Forms I-9 for any employees who presented an expired List B document between May 1, 2020 and April 30, 2022 that were not formally extended by their issuing authority, by July 31, 2022 – that’s this weekend! To update, employees must be asked to provide either an unexpired List B document, or unexpired List A document. Please note, if the employee originally presented a List B document that was formally extended by the document’s issuing authority, no further action is required.

The USCIS announcement also offers an informational chart outlining the specifics of updating these Forms I-9 – see below.

Credit – USCIS: https://www.uscis.gov/i-9-central/covid-19-form-i-9-related-news/reminder-dhs-to-end-covid-19-temporary-policy-for-expired-list-b-identity-documents

While USCIS does not include this in the reminder announcement, prior USCIS guidance for updating Section 2 differs depending on who reviewed the original List B document and who is now reviewing the new List B (or List A) document. If the individual reviewing the new document is the same, simply record the document information in the Additional Information box and initial and date. See Form I-9 Mark Up provided by USCIS. However, if the individual reviewing the new document is different from the original reviewer, then employers have two (2) options:

  1. Record the document information in the Additional Information box and sign their full name and title, instead of initials – and don’t forget to date!
  2. Complete a new Section 2 and attach to the original Form I-9.

For assistance with updating Forms I-9, preparing for a post-COVID I-9 compliance world, or for general questions regarding I-9 compliance, worksite enforcement audits, E-Verify compliance, Department of Labor immigration related wage and hour investigations, general H-1B compliance, and Department of Justice’s Immigrant and Employee Rights section (IER) anti-discrimination matters, please contact the Seyfarth Immigration Enforcement and Compliance group, or the author, Dawn Lurie, directly at dlurie@seyfarth.com.