X-44 International Hiring Policy and Procedure for Faculty/Staff (non-students)

NORTHWESTERN STATE UNIVERSITY

International Hiring Policy and Procedure for Faculty/Staff (non-students)

I Purpose and Scope: This procedure will provide assistance to University Departments when considering an offer of employment to non-immigrant international individuals. It also provides procedures for departments who plan to bring a short-term lecturer, performer, speaker, visiting professor, or scholar to perform services at the University for as little as one day, or as long as one semester.

II Reference: Code of Federal Regulations: Aliens and Nationality (8CFR)

III Responsible Area: All areas


General Information

The United States Immigration and Naturalization Service prohibits the hiring of, or payment to many international individuals while in the United States. Only a few of the many existing visa types allow working for or receiving remuneration from employers in the United States.

General Terms:

The following general terms provides an overview of INS and Northwestern State University employment terms:

International individual - an individual who is not a U.S. citizen or permanent resident.

Non-immigrant - an international individual coming to the U.S. for a temporary stay that will end when its purpose has been accomplished.

Visa - a stamped or affixed entry on a page of the passport which enable the passport bearer (non-immigrant) to request, at the port of entry, admission to the U.S. under conditions specified for the type of visa the individual holds.

Non-Immigrant international individual - this term is used to refer to an international individual who is hired as an employee (generally faculty/staff) or non-employee (short-term lecturer, performer, speaker, visiting professor, or scholar to perform services at the university for as little as one day, or as long as one semester).

Faculty/Staff Hiring Information

Before making an offer of employment or inviting a non-immigrant international individual (part-time, full-time, temporary, short-term, one-time, or permanent), two University Offices must be contacted: the hiring or inviting supervisor's Vice President and the Business Affairs-Human Resource Section. The University's standard hiring procedures must be followed in addition to the procedures outlined in this policy/procedure.

Non-immigrant international individuals hired in full-time positions are usually hired in H-1B status (Attachment 1) or occasionally in J-1 non-immigrant visa status for temporary positions. An individual who is a permanent resident (resident alien or someone with a "Green Card") is usually authorized for employment in the U. S.

It is the responsibility of international employees to understand and follow immigration requirements for their individual visa status. Fees required by INS are the responsibility of the employee. The fees charged are a requirement of the INS, not the University. The non-immigrant is responsible for paying any and all costs associated with the application and approvals/non-approvals. Under some circumstances, (such as permanent residency) immigration procedures may require the services of an immigration attorney, and the non-immigrant international individual is responsible for paying and must pay for any and all costs to immigration attorneys and/or firms that assist with the immigration procedures. University immigration services are limited to procedures and requirements pertinent to employment with Northwestern State University.

IV Procedure

When a department of Northwestern State University wishes to employ someone who is not a U.S. citizen or permanent resident, the University (not the individual) must apply to the United States Immigration & Naturalization Service (INS). The INS prohibits the hiring of, or payment to, many non-immigrant international individuals while in the United States. There are many visa types, all with specific conditions, and only a few of those allow working and/or receiving payment for work performed.

Note: It may be considered discriminatory to discuss someone's immigration status before a decision has been made to offer employment. However, there are two questions that may be asked either during the interview or when an offer of employment is being negotiated: "Are you currently authorized to work in the U.S. for any employer?" and "Is your work authorization permanent or temporary?" If you do decide to ask these questions, you should be sure to ask the same questions to all candidates under consideration (not just possible foreign applicants).

These questions will help determine what must occur to obtain employment authorization for an individual candidate/applicant. If the answer to the first question is "no", or if "temporary" is answered to the second, Northwestern must make an application to INS in order to request proper work authorization or a change of non-immigrant status for that individual. This process can take at least four to six months.


It is the responsibility of the Department Head of the hiring department to file applications to INS. The University cannot guarantee that an application will be approved and cannot guarantee that INS's decision will be made by a certain date.

Department Head/Individual(s) Responsible for Hiring

1. Interviews applicants. If applicant is someone who is not a U.S. citizen or permanent resident it may be considered discriminatory to discuss an applicant's immigration status before a decision has been made to offer employment. However, there are two questions that may be asked during the interview or when an offer of employment is being negotiated:
(1) "Are you currently authorized to work in the U.S. for any employer?"
(2) "Is your work authorized permanent or temporary?"
If it is decided to ask these questions, you should be sure to ask the same questions to all candidates under consideration (not just possible foreign applicants).

2. If the questions are asked and the answer to the first question is "no or if "temporary" is answer for second question, the University must make applications to INS in order to request proper work authorization or change of immigration status for that individual if you are going to make an offer of employment.

3. If you and others responsible for recommending a foreign applicant that is not authorized to work in the U.S. or if authorization is temporary, you should contact your Vice President and the Business Affairs - Human Resource Section. It should be made very clear to the foreign applicant, that if offered employment, it is the employees responsibility to understand and follow immigration requirements and regulations governing their individual non-immigrant status. Any fees required by the INS are the responsibility of the employee. The fees charged are a requirement of the INS not the University. Also you should inform the prospective employee that under some circumstances, immigration procedures may require the services of an immigration attorney, and the non-immigrant international individual is responsible for paying and must pay for any and all costs to immigration attorney and/or firms that assist with the immigration process.

Also, inform the foreign applicant that the University cannot guarantee that an application will be approved and cannot guarantee that INS's decision will be made by a certain date. Inform the applicant that receiving the proper work authorization or a change of non-immigrant status can take from four to six months.

Be sure to inform the applicant that the INS prohibits the hiring of or payment to those individuals that do have the proper INS approvals.

Applicable Vice President

4. Receives notice from Department Head that a foreign applicant is being offered employment and that the applicant does not have the proper INS approvals.

5. Informs the Department Head that it is the Department Heads responsibility to file application(s) to INS.

Business Affairs - Human Resource Section

6. Receives notification that a Department is offering employment to a foreign applicant and that the applicant does not have the proper INS approvals.

7. Notifies the appropriate Department Head and makes sure they understand the University's policy and procedure on hiring foreign applicants. Provide the Department Head with information needed to file proper application forms and how/where to acquire the necessary information (See link below in note to check out all forms).

Department Head/Individual(s) Responsible for Hiring

8. Gathers necessary information, complete the application and get required signatures and mail application. Provide copy to Business Affairs - Human Resource Section and keep and copy for files.

NOTE: Go to any search engine and type in OMB No. 1115-0168 and search, then click on the one titled Instructions for Completing Petition for a Non-immigrant Worker Form I-129. All the information and forms needed can be printed.