According to US government regulations, an I-9 form must be completed for each person a business hires. In fact it is required to be completed within the first 3 business days of the employees first work day.

The first task is to get the required documents from the employee. Here is the link to the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services web site for acceptable documents. And you may think that its a good idea to get as much information as possible. But don’t because there is a regulation against over documentation.

After you have the I-9 completed and signed, you must keep the original in paper or electronic form for a period of time. Click here for the calculation for the time you must retain the I-9. And in whatever form you keep the I-9, you must have it available to inspectors in 3 business days.

Professional businesswoman standing in office

A good practice is to have all the forms needed in a “new hire” folder, such as W-4, I-9, emergency contacts and work place policies and procedures. Each type of business will have its own unique set of forms. As we approach the new year it is always a good idea to review your hiring practice and paperwork.