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Temporarily Acceptable Documents: How to Handle Document Receipts on Form I-9

Updated: Feb 18, 2021

Sometimes new hires show up for orientation with their documents well-organized and in tow, but many new hires have misplaced or damaged the documents they may need for Form I-9 purposes. Luckily, Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) allow employees to present receipts for certain documents in lieu of the original List A, B, or C document so that person may work while they are waiting on a replacement document.

The “receipt rule” allows an employee to present a receipt for the application for a replacement of any document on the List of Acceptable Documents. Receipts are valid for 90 days from the day they were issued, and when they expire, the employee must show you the original document for which the receipt was issued. Okay, but how do you document this in Section 2?

The receipt rule is oftentimes confusing to human resource professionals, as they want to go through the process correctly, but the rules seem to be illogical. So, below are a few questions we receive about the receipt rule, and our answers:

Q: If employee gave me a temporary nondriver’s license, do I put temporary in the document title

A: Record the document title along with the word “Receipt”.

Q: Do I just write the expiration date listed on the receipt as the expiration date in Section 2?

A: No, the expiration date is 90 days from the day the document was issued.

Q: Do I need to fill out a new Section 2 when the employee gives me the permanent documents?

A: No, when the employee brings in the documents for which the receipts were issued, do the following:

-Examine the documents

-Draw a straight line through “Receipt” and the recorded expiration date in Section 2

-Record the expiration date listed on the document

- Draw an X through the receipts in the I-9 Record (do not remove them from the I-9 record).

-Initial and date all changes/corrections if you are the original I-9 Administrator, otherwise sign and date using the current date. Do not backdate.

-Make a copy of the documents (front and back).

Q: Should I wait to E-Verify this employee until I have the permanent documents?

A: No. E-Verify should be conducted within three business days of the employee’s first day of employment. Use the document information provided on the receipts to complete E-Verify.

The rules for completing I-9s can be technical and confusing, and all HR professionals working with I-9s should make sure to be trained on how to complete and update Form I-9s so that mistakes are not happening. Some mistakes can lead to fines for the company, while others may lead to jail time, or both. Get trained to avoid any possible headaches for you and your employer.

Danielle Atchison, Business Immigration Attorney MDIVANI CORPORATE IMMIGRATION LAW FIRM 7007 College Blvd., # 460, Overland Park, KS 66211 USA Phone :: 913.317.6200 Email ::

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