How to Fill Out Form I9: What Employers Need to Know

09 June, 2022    6 min read


Can you imagine being fined almost $800 because your employee forgot to sign a piece of paper? Multiply that one mistake by thousands of employees and the result is a huge headache for business owners who fail to pay attention to I-9 forms.

The purpose of the I-9 is to help employers verify the identity and employment authorization of each person they hire. Every new employee hired after November 6, 1986 is required to have an I-9 form. Not having a properly completed I-9 form can result in fines of $110 to $1100 per I-9.  Over the past few years the number of I-9 audits has increased dramatically, so it’s important to make sure I-9’s are being completed accurately and on time for every new employee.

Recently, Ketchikan Drywall Services (KDS), a drywall and framing company in Washington state, was fined $173,250 for 225 separate I-9 violations; That’s an average fine of $770 per I-9 form. Many of the violations were a result of simple mistakes, such as failing to check a status box, checking more than one status box, checking the wrong status box, failing to sign the I-9, not listing all required information for List A, B, or C, accepting improper documentation, and a failure to complete Section 3 of the I-9 when necessary. This just goes to show that even clerical errors can add up to huge fines and cost a company a lot of money.

So what can you do? Take a few minutes and watch the video on how to fill out form I9! The few minutes you will spend reviewing the I-9 could potentially save you thousands of dollars in the future. At SWARMHR, we want to ensure that your business has good HR compliance practices and will continue to provide content that helps business owners.

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