Pre-filling Section 1

The latest version of Form I-9 is a “fillable” PDF, increasing the temptation to pre-fill portions of Section 1, the section that is completed by the employee. Providing a pre-filled form is a convenience for the employee and may save time during the meeting.

Although we prefer that the employee complete Section 1, there isn’t anything wrong with pre-filling that section. However, DHS/Form I-9 rules state that if Section 1 is prepared by someone other than the new employee, the “Preparer/Translator” section should be completed by the person who pre-filled Section 1.

Many employers and service providers take the position that the “Preparer and/or Translator Certification” section should only be completed if the employee has a language barrier or a physical disability preventing them from completing Section 1, but this is not the case. Any time someone other than the employee completes Section 1 for any reason, the Preparer and/or Translator Certification section also needs to be completed and signed.

You should enter your name and address (not the employer’s, as in the “Certification” section on page 2) in the “Preparer and/or Translator Certification” section.