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Q&A: Can We Accept Expired ID for the I-9?

Question:

A newly-hired employee cannot come up with proper identification for the Form I-9. He has presented an expired state ID, but no other documentation. I assume we can’t accept the expired documentation. Can we still have him work or should we let him go?

Answer: Marisa, PHR, one of our HR Pros says…

You are correct that you may not accept an expired ID when completing Section 2 of the I-9. And unless the employee has presented enough other documentation for completion of Section 2, you’ll need to let him know that he has not established work authorization.

Show him the I-9 List of Acceptable Documents and ask him to provide alternate documentation or a valid receipt for a replacement document. Be sure not to specify which documents on the list he needs to provide, as this must be the employee’s decision.

As you’re aware, the I-9 must be completed within three business days of the employee’s date of hire. If he fails to bring acceptable documentation within that timeframe, you should either terminate his employment or put him on an unpaid leave of absence for a defined and communicated length of time (e.g., 10 days) pending his presentation of proper documents.

I hope this information is helpful.

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Marisa, PHR

Marisa has experience working in a wide variety of HR areas, including payroll, staffing, and on-/ off-boarding. She has worked at both national and local companies, in a wide range of businesses and industries. Marisa earned her B.S. in Business Administration and Communications from the University of Oregon. She loves watching football and basketball, volunteering and spending time with her two dogs.

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