10.4 Avoiding Discrimination in Recruiting, Hiring, and the Form I-9 Process

You should treat individuals equally when recruiting and hiring, and when verifying employment authorization and identity.

You should not:

  • Have different rules or requirements for individuals because of their national origin, citizenship, or immigration status. You must allow each individual to choose which documents to present from the Lists of Acceptable Documents. For example, you cannot request that non-U.S. citizens present DHS-issued documents. Both U.S. citizens and non-U.S. citizens may present a driver’s license (List B) and an unrestricted Social Security card (List C) to establish identity and employment authorization if they wish. However, you must reject documents that do not reasonably appear to be genuine or to relate to the individual presenting them, regardless of their citizenship status or national origin.
  • Request to see employment eligibility verification documents before hiring an employee and having them complete Form I-9 because they look or sound “foreign,” or because they state they’re not a U.S. citizen.
  • Refuse to accept a document or refuse to hire an individual because their document has a future expiration date.
  • Request specific documents from individuals to create an E-Verify case or based on an E-Verify Tentative Nonconfirmation.
  • Request that an individual create a Self Check case and/or present documents showing they confirmed employment eligibility with Self Check.
  • Request that an employee who presented an unexpired Permanent Resident Card present a new document when the Permanent Resident Card expires.
  • Request specific documents for reverification. For example, you should allow an employee who presented an unexpired Form I-766, Employment Authorization Document, during initial verification to present any document from either List A or C during reverification.
  • Limit jobs to U.S. citizens unless U.S. citizenship is required for the specific position by law; regulation; executive order; or federal, state, or local government contract.

If you do any of the actions above based on a worker’s citizenship, immigration status, or national origin, then your actions may violate federal discrimination laws.

Last Reviewed/Updated: 04/27/2020