UCR Policies and Procedures

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Campus Policy Number: 650-05

Alien Sponsorship Policy

Policy Owner: International Services Center
Effective Date: 10/1/89

    1. Background
    2. To participate in international scholar and student exchange, UCR is accountable for certain record-keeping, for adherence to reporting requirements, and for the accuracy of documents it submits. Failure by University personnel to follow established and proper procedures could result in the University's losing the ability to enroll foreign students and to hire foreign scholars. In addition, it could be subject to criminal sanctions and/or fines.

      To host, hire, or otherwise compensate non-citizens, the University of California must observe all regulations of a complex, federally-regulated petition system for the awarding of visas to non-citizens. The University prepares the visa entrance documents as the government-approved hosting institution. However, federal regulations presuppose that the primary responsibility for any visa petition lies directly with the individual seeking legal admission to the United States.

      1. UCR Assistance with Immigration Affairs:
      2. UCR retains the authority to determine on an individual basis the visa classifications with which it will assist. Such determinations will be made by the Vice Chancellor for Faculty Relations in consultation with the International Services Center (ISC) at the time the individual is prepared to apply for the appropriate visa. All decisions will adhere to applicable federal regulations and regional standards of the Immigration and Naturalization Service, Department of Labor, and the Employment Development Department (EDD).

      3. Document Signature Control:
      4. All documents having to do with official immigration matters and requiring University signatures are to be routed through ISC for processing. Normally, all appointment letters for foreign scholars on University paid appointments will be prepared by the Academic Personnel Office.

        • For Students: is vested in the ISC.
        • For Temporary Non-Student Employment or Affiliation: is vested in the ISC after approval by the Vice Chancellor for Faculty Relations.
        • For Permanent Employment: is vested in the Vice Chancellor for Faculty Relations, who alone may approve and sign for these hirings. This signature is on file with the appropriate state and federal agencies as the only authorized one for the campus.


      5. Responsibility for Processing and Costs:
      6. Cooperation with the immigration process as endorser or purveyor of information concerning appointment status is an institutional decision based on the potential benefits to UCR and will be made by the Vice Chancellor for Faculty Relations.

        Processing is the joint responsibility of the individual and the hiring department, as guided by the ISC. No processing or petition fees or other costs shall be borne by the University.

      7. Proof of Employability:
      8. It is the potential employee's responsibility to prove legal authorization to be employed or to receive any kind of remuneration. The Immigration Reform and Control Act of November 1986 establishes the University's responsibility as an employer to require such proof.

      1. Advance Approval - must be obtained from the Vice Chancellor for Faculty Relations for UCR to assist any individual with the following for permanent employment as defined by UCR guidelines: Alien Employment Certifications (aka, labor certifications); Schedule A dossiers and Petition for Prospective Immigrant Employee Status (Form I-140).
      2. Eligible Title Series - are limited to the Professorial series (tenure-track faculty) though in rare instances and for only the most compelling reasons exceptions may be made in academic research series. Exceptions for staff titles will not be authorized.
      3. Funding -
        • Note 1: Following federal guidelines, funding for academic research title positions must be secured for a minimum of three years at the time of filing the petition.
        • Note 2: Further, citizenship or permanent residency status may be required by certain federal granting agencies. Persons on or seeking grants should contact the Research Office for additional clarification before preparing petitions.
      4. Recruitment -
        • All such recruitment must be conducted according to Immigration, Department of Labor, and EDD standards as reflected in UCR policies and procedures. Advertisements and recruitment plans must be approved by the Vice Chancellor for Faculty Relations prior to being embarked upon and submitted to journals and media outlets. Conformity to campus Affirmative Action guidelines is required.
        • Advertisements must include: job title, a statement that salary level is consistent with title and experience, job duties, minimum qualifications, and location.
      5. Transferability from Temporary to Permanent Employment -
        • Under labor and immigration regulations, changing a non-citizen from temporary to permanent employment status requires petitioning of the appropriate governmental agencies by the individual. UCR does not directly represent individuals in filing Applications for Immigrant Visa Status or in petitioning for Adjustments of Status to Permanent Residence. These petitions are of an individual, personal, and private nature. Should the employee need a statement of employment or affiliation, the University will provide one reflective of conditions on the date of the statement.
        • Individuals and departments should understand that federal law requires as part of the petition evidence that a current, full, and open search has been conducted under the guidelines listed for "permanent employment."
        • Further, federal law does not permit experience gained from temporary employment at UCR to be included in the non-citizen's dossier as part of the consideration of him/her for the same position on a permanent basis.
        • Finally, all parties should be aware that even when proper procedures have been observed and final approval obtained from United States agencies, the government of the non-citizen may inhibit/prohibit the immigration objective indicated in the petition.
    1. Non-Immigrant
      1. There are two types of visitor visas, generally valid for 1 - 6 months.
        • B-2 Visitor for Pleasure - used typically for tourist activities, visits to friends and relatives. This would be the visa for an alien who will "drop by a lab."
        • B-1 Visitor for Business - used typically to attend a conference or for a month's collaboration in a lab. If the department will want to provide limited travel and subsistence or honoraria to a foreign visitor, this is a simple option. The alien must not be lulled into thinking there is nothing he/she needs to do. Their entry must be carefully guided.
      2. F and J (Student) Visas - these are restricted to foreign students having an institutionally approved academic objective. Under federal law, the nature of work and the percentage of time worked are highly limited. Departments considering hiring F and J students should contact the ISC to ascertain the eligibility of specific individuals. This should be done prior to making job commitments.
      3. J (Scholar) Visa - this is restricted by federal authority to foreign scholars having an institutionally approved, temporary academic objective. A date of termination is governmentally established on a case-by-case basis, normally for a period not exceeding three years. Depending on the original date of visa issuance and the holder's academic location prior to UCR, this period may be significantly less than three years.
      4. H Visa - this is restricted by federal authority to foreign scholars who are "members of a profession and of distinguished merit and ability." As a temporary appointment requiring a non-immigrant visa, it will carry a termination date. The cumulative maximum time in the H status is five years. Depending on the original data of visa issuance and the holder's academic location prior to UCR, the period at UCR may be significantly less than five years. (Note: this visa category may not be used for without salary appointments.)
    2. Immigrant/Permanent Resident
      1. Designates an alien who has entered the United States with an immigrant visa or adjusted status to permanent resident. Alien may remain and work indefinitely in the U.S. This status can lead to U.S. citizenship if so desired by the alien.
      2. The alien holds an Alien Registration Card or "green card."