How to properly use a Notary to complete an I-9 Form

Remote hiring has become an increasingly popular way for employers to tap into a larger pool of talent.  One of the challenges employers face with their remote employees, is in processing I-9 Forms correctly when using a Notary Public.  Finding a Notary at a local UPS store is a simple process, however having the Notary complete the form correctly as well as following up with the Notary for any corrections or questions can seem impossible.

It’s important the employers that regularly hire employees remotely build a system that will meet the compliance standards.  There are 4 key areas of focus when thinking about how to improve a current system or implement a new one.

First inform your employee of what is needed to properly complete the I-9.  Let them know of their start date and the date that they need to complete section 2 by.  Employees should be made aware that a Notary may lack experience with the I-9 as well as the common areas where mistakes are made.

Provide clear written instructions that your employee can give to the Notary.  Again keep in mind that most Notaries may not have experience with filling out the I-9.  It’s a good idea to put your contact phone number on the instruction sheet so that the Notary can call you should there be any questions on filling out the from.

Have the employee get the Notaries name, phone number and e-mail address.  This will make it easy for you to follow up with the Notary should there be a correction needed.

Ask the Notary complete a form that designates them as your authorized agent for completing the I-9 form.  Ask for their commission information, including commission number, expiration and the state they are licensed in.

You may also want to consider using an electronic I-9 management system to help reduce errors with in your remote hire process.

Remote hiring is here to stay and meeting the challenges of properly verifying employment eligibility of the employee is the sole responsibility of the employer.  By recognizing the problems you face by using a Notary to compete the I-9 Form, keeping your employee informed and retaining contact information on the Notary, you can improve your process and feel more secure in meeting I-9 form compliance standards.