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New I-9 Policy Due to COVID-19

 

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has issued a temporary policy to allow employers to accept expired List B documents when completing the Form I-9 beginning May 1. This policy is intended to account for the fact that many people are unable to renew their driver's licenses or state ID cards at this time due to stay-at-home orders. While some states have extended the expiration of driver's licenses and state identification cards, which are common List B documents, others have not. The temporary policy addresses both situations.

Temporary Extension for Expired List B Documents That Have Not Been Extended

List B documents that expire on or after March 1, 2020, and have not been extended by the state may be treated the same as if the employee presented a valid receipt for an acceptable document for Form I-9 purposes.

If an employee presents their driver's license that expired on or after March 1 and it was not extended by the state, employers should:

  • Record the documentation information in Section 2 under List B, as applicable; and
  • Enter the word "COVID-19" in the Additional Information field.
When the DHS ends this temporary policy, employers must require the employee to provide a valid unexpired document within 90 days. (The replacement for the expired document is preferred, but employees may choose to present a different document or documents to satisfy the I-9 requirements.) At that time, in the Section 2 Additional Information field, employers must:

  • Record the number and other required document information from the actual document presented; and
  • Initial and date the change.
Procedure for List B Documents That Have Been Extended

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 because of 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. In that case, the employer must:

  • 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.

The employee is not required to present a valid unexpired List B document later.

E-Verify

Employers participating in E-Verify 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. Even if a state has automatically extended the employee's driver's license because of COVID-19, employers should enter the expiration date as printed on the employee's document when creating the E-Verify case.

Reminders

Employers are required to complete an employee's Form I-9 within three days of their first day of work. The DHS has temporarily suspended the physical presence requirement for fully remote workplaces.


 

HR Fuzion, LLC
EEOC Updates Employer Guidance on Coronavirus and the ADA

 

On April 23, 2020, the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) issued additional answers to FAQs about how employers should comply with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) while also observing all applicable emergency workplace safety guidelines during the coronavirus pandemic. The new FAQs were added to guidance that the EEOC previously issued on March 18, April 9, and April 17, 2020.

The FAQs draw from the EEOC’s existing pandemic publication, Pandemic Preparedness in the Workplace and the ADA, to help employers navigate workplace issues related to COVID-19. In particular, the EEOC’s FAQs include information from a section of the publication that answers employer questions about what to do after a pandemic has been declared.

Employers are subject to the ADA if they have 15 or more employees. Smaller employers may be subject to similar rules under applicable state or local laws. All employers should follow the most current guidelines and suggestions for maintaining workplace safety, as issued by the CDC and any applicable state or local health agencies. Employers with 15 or more employees should also become familiar with and follow the guidance provided in the EEOC’s FAQs about ADA compliance. These and all smaller employers should ensure that they comply with state and local anti-discrimination laws as well.


 

HR Fuzion, LLC
Sick Workers Should Stay Home

 

When sick employees come to work, they can potentially spread their illness throughout the office. Learn why sick workers should stay home, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic, by contacting us today!


 

HR Fuzion, LLC

If you work with us, you can expect us to:

  • Challenge assumptions and the status quo
  • Push your Human Resources Function to move beyond where you are today
  • Identify the challenges of your Human Resources Function and look for new solutions that will drive opportunities
  • Educate as we go, leaving your team more capable and more independent
EEOC Delays EEO-1 and Related Reports Due to COVID-19

Filers Should Prepare to Submit 2019 and 2020 Data in Early 2021

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, employers and unions that are subject to equal employment opportunity (EEO) reporting under Title VII of the Civil Right Act will not be required to file EEO surveys in 2020, the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) announced on May 8, 2020. The following EEO surveys, which the EEOC had previously expected to open in 2020, have been delayed:

  • The 2019 EEO-1 Component 1 (required from private employers with 100 or more employees and certain federal contractors);
  • The 2020 EEO-3 (required from local referral unions with 100 or more members); and
  • The 2020 EEO-5 (required from public elementary and secondary school districts with 100 or more employees).

The EEOC expects to open these surveys in early 2021 and will notify filers of precise opening dates as soon as they are available.

 

HR Fuzion, LLC
Determining When to Reopen After the Coronavirus Shutdown

While many essential businesses (e.g., hospitals, pharmacies, grocery stores and gas stations) have remained open during the COVID-19 pandemic, other operations deemed nonessential have shut down temporarily or changed the nature of their operations.

However, we may be nearing a time when stay-at-home regulations are scaled back and all businesses are allowed to resume as normal. The question then is: How will business owners know it is acceptable to reopen? The following are some best practices to keep in mind:

  • Review guidance from state and local governments—The COVID-19 pandemic impacts states and regions in different ways. Just because a business is allowed to reopen in one region of the country doesn’t automatically mean your operations will be allowed to resume as well. As such, it’s critical to understand and review all relevant state and local orders to determine if and when your business is allowed to reopen.
  • Understand the risks—If and when the government allows all businesses to reopen, that doesn’t necessarily mean COVID-19 is no longer a threat to your operations. What’s more, some businesses may have greater COVID-19 exposures than others, underscoring the importance of performing a thorough risk assessment before reopening. Prior to conducting a risk assessment, it’s important to review guidance from the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), state and local agencies, industry associations as well as your local health department. More information on conducting a risk assessment can be found below.
Again, before reopening, it’s critical to seek the expertise of legal, insurance and other professionals.

 

HR Fuzion, LLC
DOL Now Fully Enforcing FFCRA Paid Leave Rules for Coronavirus

 

After observing a 30-day nonenforcement period to help employers come into compliance with new paid leave rules, the U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has announced that it is fully enforcing all provisions of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA).

The FFCRA requires private employers with fewer than 500 employees and certain government employers to provide paid leave for their employees, either for the employees’ own health needs or to care for others, for reasons related to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. These requirements apply for employee leave taken between April 1 and Dec. 31, 2020.

Now that the temporary policy has expired, the DOL is fully enforcing the FFCRA. Employers may still face retroactive penalties for violations committed during the nonenforcement period under certain circumstances. According to the DOL’s frequently asked questions (FAQs) about the FFCRA, the agency will retroactively enforce violations back to the effective date of April 1, 2020, if employers have not remedied the violations. Penalties for FFCRA violations include civil lawsuits and criminal charges punishable by imprisonment and fines of up to $10,000.

The laws take effect within 15 days of passage; the leave benefits will expire on Dec. 31, 2020.

 

HR Fuzion, LLC

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