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USCIS Announces COVID-19 Temporary Policy for List B Identity Documents

Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced a temporary policy for expired “List B” documents used for to complete Employment Eligibility Verification of Form I-9.

Starting May 1, List B documents that expire on or after March 1, 2020, may be treated as if the employee presented a valid receipt for the document.

USCIS has issued the following guidance to employers:

When your employee provides an acceptable expired List B document that has not been extended by the issuing authority you should:

  • Record the document information in Section 2 under List B, as applicable; and,
  • Enter the word “COVID-19” in the Additional Information Field.

Within 90 days after DHS’s termination of this temporary policy, the employee must present a valid unexpired document to replace the expired document presented when they were initially hired.

Note:  It is best if the employee can present the replacement of the actual document that was expired, but if necessary, the employee may choose to present a different List A or List B document or documents and record the new document information in the Additional Information Field.

When the employee later presents an unexpired document, you should:

In the Section 2 Additional Information field:

  • Record the number and other required document information from the actual document presented;
  • Initial and date the change.

Procedure for List B Documents extended by an Issuing Authority

If the employee’s List B identity document expired on or after March 1, 2020, and the issuing authority has extended the document expiration date due to COVID-19, the document is acceptable as a List B document for Form I-9 (not as a receipt) during the extension timeframe specified by the issuing authority.

When your employee provides an acceptable expired List B document that has been extended by the issuing authority you should:

  • Enter the document’s expiration date in Section 2; and,
  • Enter “COVID-19 EXT” in the Additional Information Field.

Employers may also attach a copy of a webpage or other notice indicating that the issuing authority has extended the documents.  Employers can confirm that their state has auto-extended the expiration date of state IDs and driver’s licenses by checking the state Motor Vehicle Administration or Department of Motor Vehicles’ website.

Note:  For extended documents, the employee is not required to later present a valid unexpired List B document.

E-Verify participating employers should use the employee’s expired List B document number from Section 2 of the Form I-9 to create an E-Verify case as usual within three days of the date of hire.

DHS continues to monitor the ongoing COVID-19 national emergency and will provide updated guidance as needed.

If your business is experiencing “down time” due to COVID-19 restrictions, consider self-auditing your I-9 records and purging files. If you need assistance, download our free I-9 Compliance Guide, or contact us for a complimentary consultation.