Form I-9 and Notary Challenges

Our office has had several calls from people needing their I-9 notarized.  The callers are often upset when I explain that the I-9 doesn’t require a notary.  Okay, so it just needs to be witnessed?  Wrong again.

Form I-9 is the Employment Eligibility Verification which employers are required to complete.  This form is required to verify the identity and employment authorization of each new employee.  This form is required for both citizens and non-citizens.
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This form is to be “Certified” by the Employer or Authorized Representative.  This is where the challenge begins.  The notary is not the employer, does not work for the employer and is not an “Authorized Representative” as defined in the document.  Complete instructions along with the form can be found by linking from to the I-9 Form.

If you are reading this post and your prospective employer has suggested you find a notary….I suggest you tell your prospective employer to get education on completing the I-9.  Okay, maybe this isn’t the best way to address the situation but you can certainly let them know that a notary probably will not take the responsibility for signing the form to verify the information.  The I-9 carries a lot of  responsibility including signing under “threat of perjury” that the documents are correct.

Employers who hire out of state may make an arrangement with a person, who happens to be a notary, to complete the I-9 but this is completely separate from the duties as a notary.

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There are some online services which are now offering Form I-9 services.  Search for them or use the #Form I-9.

I would love to hear how you see I-9’s in your business.

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