As you may know, most U.S. employers have a legal duty to verify the work eligibility of everyone they hire. This obligation, which comes from a 1986 federal law, requires employers and new employees to complete I-9 Employment Eligibility Verification forms.
On your portion, you must provide documentation that proves your identity and legal authorization to work. If you have an L-2 visa, you likely also have the legal ability to work for virtually any employer. Still, it can be difficult to know what documents are acceptable for I-9 purposes.
Around your first day of employment, your employer should give you the I-9 form to review. You also should receive the form’s instructions and a list of acceptable documents. As long as you provide an acceptable document or a combination of acceptable documents, your employer must accept what you offer.
It is not uncommon for L-2 visa holders to provide their I-94 admission records for I-9 purposes. Indeed, according to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, your I-94 is acceptable proof of your work authorization, provided it has an L-2S notation on it. Remember, though, you still must provide an additional identity document to go along with your I-94 card.
If your I-94 does not have an L-2s notation, you can still present it to your employer. For your employer to accept the document, however, you also should provide the USCIS notice with the L-2S notation. You should have received this notice in the mail.
As you can see, completing the I-9 can be somewhat challenging for L-2 visa holders and their employers. Ultimately, you may have to educate your employer to ensure you can continue to work after providing acceptable documents.