How to Handle New Changed Identity Scenarios

What should an employer do when an employee named “Juan” comes in one day and provides a new Social Security card and driver’s license indicating that he is actually “Carlos?” Companies will face name change dilemmas as a result of President Obama’s Executive Action. It will have wide-ranging effects throughout the business community. The reality is that undocumented workers exist, and you should prepare yourself and your business for the effects that the executive order will have on your employees and their families.

As a result of DAPA and DACA, employers will face situations where immigrant employees were working with false identities and false employment authorization. As an employer, you should prepare today to assess on what terms you will allow employees to remain on your payroll. Listed below are four steps that will assist you in your preparation for NCIS.

  1. Evaluate your company policies on addressing false information on job applications, employee dishonesty and fraud. If you do not have any, establish them. Ensure your policies provide flexibility with regards to the appropriate remedial measures. We encourage employers to evaluate each scenario and advise against the use of a one-strike policy. Note: In California, an employer cannot terminate an employee for attempting to update his or her I-9.
  2. Prepare and complete a new Form I-9 in the same manner as any new hire, although this scenario is not considered a new hire. Use the employee’s original date of hire noted on the previous I-9. Retain the previously completed I-9 with the newly completed I-9.
  3. Document the reason for the new changed identity scenario (i.e. obtained work authorization through DACA or DAPA).
  4. Notify employee that he or she is responsible for ensuring compliance with applicable tax regulations.

Remember that Form I-9 was revised on March 8, 2013, and all employers should be using the new form as of May 8, 2013. Click here for more information regarding Form I-9. The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services’ M-274 Handbook is the employer’s best resource for updated guidance on recording changes of name and other identity guidance. Click here to access it.


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