Marks Gray Business Immigration Tips for Employers: How to Perform Form I-9 Verification for Remote Workers Using an Agent or Authorized Employer Representative

Employers — want to know how you can use an agent or authorized employer representative to perform remote Form I-9 verification?

With ongoing remote work, which is likely to continue, employers have been asking me to review the option for completing the Form I-9 for remote workers using an agent or authorized employer representative, such as another HR professional, family member or anyone else.

Here is a step-by-step overview of this process. 

Section 1

This section of the Form I-9 is completed by the employee. Employers or their representative should provide the new hire with the Form I-9 and Form I-9 instructions to complete Section 1 on or before the date of hire.

Section 2

Employers must complete Section 2 of the I-9 within three business days of hire (or on the first day of work for pay if the duration of employment will be three days or less).

For remote hire situations, an authorized representative or agent of the employer may assist in completing Section 2 of the Form I-9. The representative or agent must review the original documents while in the physical presence of the person presenting them for purposes of Section 2 completion. 

The employer continues to be liable for any violations in connection with the form or the verification process when an authorized representative completes the form.  

Thus, below are our tips for employers using an agent:

  • Have a policy that outlines the remote verification process including the people who might act as an agent for your organization
  • Provide instructions to the agent as to how to complete the process and a sample of a completed Form I-9, particularly section 2, to minimize mistakes
  • Review the Form I-9 as soon as possible after completion by an agent and take any required corrective action and 
  • Be mindful of the E-Verify requirements (if you are an E-Verify employer)

In general, it is our recommendation that the Form I-9 verification process be done in-house, particularly when the employer can take advantage of the new remote verification flexibilities.  However, in some cases, the agent option is the best option.  HERE is a completed I-9 Sample for a U.S. Citizen when an Agent for the Employer is used.