COVID-19 Employment Services

I-9 In-Person Employment Verification Deferred During COVID -19 Pandemic


Will the Employment Eligibility Verification (Form I-9) compliance be waived during the Governor’s Shelter-in-Place Order due to COVID-19?

No.  Form I-9 compliance is still required with limited changes only to the in-person document review.

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announcement does not excuse employers from completing the Form I-9 nor change the timeframes for the Form I-9 process. DHS is simply allowing flexibility to the in-person, original document review requirement on a temporary basis. A new hire still must complete Section 1 of Form I-9 on or before the first day of employment. Employers still must complete Section 2 within three business days of hire, regardless of whether they inspect documents in-person or remotely.

Will Form I-9 need to be verified in person during the Governor’s Shelter-in-Place Order due to COVID-19?

No. Form I-9 in-person employment verification is deferred during the Governor’s Shelter-in-Place Order due to COVID-19.


Department of Homeland Security is allowing employers to inspect Form I-9, Section 2 documents remotely (e.g., over a video link, fax, or email) and to inspect and retain copies (rather than originals) of those documents until normal business operations resume. 

How should I complete Section 2 of Form I-9 when verifying the documentation remotely?

Enter "COVID-19" as the reason for the physical inspection delay in Section 2 "Additional Information" field.

Will documents need to be verified in person when the pandemic and the Governor’s

Shelter-in-Place is over?


Once normal operations resume, all employees who were onboarded using remote verification, must report to their employer within three business days for in-person verification of identity and employment eligibility documentation for Form I-9, Employment Eligibility Verification. Once the documents have been physically inspected, the employer should add “documents physically examined” with the date of inspection to the Section 2 additional information field on the Form I-9, or to section 3 as appropriate.


Does the in-person exception apply to organizations that are not working 100% remotely?

No.  But according to the DHS, if newly hired employees or existing employees are subject to COVID-19 quarantine or lockdown protocols, DHS will evaluate this on a case-by-case basis.  

SF State will process the Form I-9 remotely due to the Governor’s Shelter-in-Place order.

Will my new hire need to complete a Temporary Telecommuting Form if working remotely?

Yes.  The temporary telecommuting arrangement must be approved by the appropriate administrator and Human Resources. 

The temporary telecommuting documentation is also a requirement of the DHS when verifying the employee’s Form I-9 remotely.

What is the process for completing new hire paperwork for hires not completed with an HR Analyst (eg, faculty, EHIREs..)?

Send the documents included in the New Hire Packet to the hire electronically. The employee will send the completed documents via postal mail to SF State.  Form I-9 will be completed remotely, and once the campus resumes normal business operations, and in-person verification will need to be scheduled within 3 days.

Where may I obtain additional information?

 Department of Homeland Security