Visas for International Scholars 07.20.2012 FINAL

Report
Visas for International Scholars
Brian Groves
International Scholar Advisor – Bechtel International Center
Lynn Kroner
International Scholar Advisor – Bechtel International Center
Al Murray
Postdoctoral Services Manager – Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
Tammy Jo Wilson
Ass’t Postdoctoral Services Manager – Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
July 20, 2012
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
Bechtel International Center 1
Agenda
• Types of Visas for International Scholars
• J-1 Visa: The DS-2019 J Scholar Visa Request
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Preparation for and Submission of DS-2019 Requests
DS-2019 Requests – Key Points to Remember!
OPA Approval of DS-2019 Requests
SSN Applications
Non-US MD Trainees
DS-2019 and Appointment Extensions
J-1 Visa Transfers
Change of Visa Status
Leaves of Absence
• H-1B (and other) Employment Visas for Postdocs
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H-1B Visa Terms and Conditions
H-1B Employment Visa Policy
Compelling Circumstances and Other Exceptions
Implications of a J-1 Waiver
Submission of H-1B Visa Petition to OPA
OPA’s H-1B Visa Request Form
Implementation Guidelines and Meeting Dates
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
Bechtel International Center 2
Types of Visas for International Scholars
• F-1 OPT
– Graduate students from US institutions may begin a postdoctoral
appointment in F-1 Optional Practical Training status for the
Employment Authorization Document (EAD) period - up to one year
– Transfer to J-1 or H-1B visa status at expiration of EAD
• J-1 Scholar (DS-2019) is the expected status for foreign postdocs
– Scholar visa
– Up to a maximum of 5 years
• H-1B
– Employment visa
– Exception visa status for postdocs
– Up to a maximum of 6 years
The start and end dates of J-1 and H-1B visa requests must match the
start and end dates of the postdoctoral appointment
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
Bechtel International Center 3
Visa Decision Tree – Scholar in US
Upload copy of EAD
Card to OPA
Recommendation
Form. 3-6 months
prior to expiration =
Change of Status:
F-1 OPT
Current Visa Status
Scholar has DS-2019
(Research Scholar
Category only)
J-1
J-1
H-1B
Yes, NonStanford
Sponsored
Yes,
Stanford
Sponsored
Slides 6-18; 25-26
Slides 29-41
DS-2019 Transfer:
Slides 23-24
DS-2019
Extension: Slide 22
H-1B
In US
Permanent
Resident
International Scholar
Scholar has I-797
Approval Notice
Yes
H-1B Transfer or
Extension:
Slides 29-41
Not in US
Is Scholar J-1 Eligible?
(see next slide)
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
Scholar has PR Card
Yes
Submit copy of PR
Card to OPA & Payroll
4
Bechtel International Center
4
Visa Decision Tree – Scholar Not in US
Current Visa Status
(see previous slide)
In US
J-1 Visa
Request Initial DS-2019:
Slides 6-18
International Scholar
Not in US
Yes
Is Scholar J-1 Eligible?
No
Further evaluation required:
1. Employment visa for postdoc:
Slides 29-41
2. Staff position: Consult with
your HR office
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
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Bechtel International Center
5
J-1 Visa:
The DS-2019 J Scholar Visa Request
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
Bechtel International Center 6
Preparing for the DS-2019 Request
• Administrators should review this information
prior to completing a DS-2019 Request:
– Responsibilities of Sponsoring Departments
• http://icenter.stanford.edu/depts/responsibilities_J.html
– Application for the SEVIS Visa Certificate (DS2019) for J-1 Exchange Visitors
• http://icenter.stanford.edu/depts/j_status.html
– J-1 Exchange Visitor Information Checklist
• http://icenter.stanford.edu/depts/j-checklist.html
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
Bechtel International Center 7
Submission of DS-2019 Requests
• Submit the J Scholar Visa Request Web Form (DS-2019)
at least 8 weeks before expected arrival/appointment
start date (3 months is preferred) via AXESS
– http://icenter.stanford.edu/depts/j_status.html
– No link to 'J Scholar Visa Request' in Axess?
Request access here: http://www.stanford.edu/dept/icenter/j-scholar.fb
• Support/funding for Initial requests must cover the
period reflected by program start/end dates on
Request Form.
• OPA CANNOT approve visa program requests without
an associated postdoctoral appointment request
• AFTER the completed and approved form is received by
the I-Center, allow at least one week for issuance of the
DS-2019
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
Bechtel International Center 8
DS-2019 Request - Prior and Current Visa Details
• Administrators must specify if the postdoc
has held J status within the past 2 years
– If yes, check “yes” on the J Scholar web form and
note the J category and previous J program start
and end dates
– Category and dates are noted on previously issued
DS-2019 forms; ask postdoc for copies
• If postdoc is currently in the U.S. in other
than J visa status, note this on the J Scholar
Request form and how change of status
will occur
– Travel & re-entry, rather than mail, is
recommended
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
Bechtel International Center 9
DS-2019 Requests –
Key Points to Remember!
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
Bechtel International Center 10
Key Point: Biographic Data
• Accuracy of biographic data is crucial
• Before starting the DS-2019 web form, review
the instructions at
http://icenter.stanford.edu/depts/j_status.html
• Refer to copy of passport when completing DS2019 web form
– Postdoc’s name must be entered as it appears in
the machine-readable strip at the bottom of
the biographic page of passport
– Date of birth must be entered in U.S.
month/day/year format
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
Bechtel International Center11
Key Point: Passport Machine-Readable Strip
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
Bechtel International Center12
Key Point: Program Start Date
• DS-2019 program start date MUST be the same as the
Appointment start date
• Allow Enough Time for Processing
– OPA approval and Bechtel processing = 8 weeks minimum
– After you mail the DS-2019 to the postdoc, the postdoc needs time
to apply for and be granted the visa and arrive to Stanford
– Arrival up to 30 days before program start date is permitted.
– If postdoc can’t arrive on time or doesn’t submit J Arrival and
Insurance Confirmation form by 25th day after program start date
on DS-2019, the Administrator MUST submit a Request to amend
the program start date to a later date.
• AVOID requesting a DS-2019 with amended start
date! Use a realistic start date
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
Bechtel International Center13
Key Point: Funding
• Initial and transfer J-1 (DS-2019) requests
–Funding entered must be total funding for
entire program date timeframe noted on DS2019 Request Form; i.e., from the Program
Start Date to the Program End Date.
• Extensions
–Funding entered must be for extension
period only; i.e., from current DS-2019 end
date to the new end date being submitted
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
Bechtel International Center14
Key Point: Program description
• In the description of program field, write a
brief (2-3 lines at most) description of the
general type of research the postdoc will
conduct
–Do NOT note department or lab where the
research will take place, or the names of any
collaborators, faculty, etc.
• Example: “Research in Radiology”, NOT
“Research in imaging with Dr Wu at the
dept of Radiology”
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
Bechtel International Center15
OPA Approval of DS-2019 Requests
• DS-2019 Web Forms route to OPA for approval
before processing by Bechtel
• DS-2019 request and postdoctoral
appointment Recommendation or Change
Form must be submitted simultaneously
(within a few days of one another)
– OPA CANNOT approve visa request or extensions
without postdoctoral appointment web
form/documents
– PD Web Forms training provides instruction on
appointment submission
• DS-2019 requests are generally approved by
OPA within 5 business days
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
Bechtel International Center16
After OPA and Bechtel Approve Appointment
and DS-2019…
• Postdoc Administrator Should:
– Send DS-2019 document to International Scholar
– Two business days after OPA appointment
approval notice:
1. Look up the Postdoc’s student ID# (EmplID) in PeopleSoft
2. Direct postdoc to the online pre-arrival orientation:
http://postdocs.stanford.edu/incoming_scholars/
3. Prepare an Arrival Orientation Packet for the Postdoc
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Administrator’s Orientation Toolkit is online at
http://postdocs.stanford.edu/admin/orientationtoolkit.html
4. Register the Postdoc in a Benefits Session
5. Aid-Year Activate in GFS and enter the aid (funding) information
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
Bechtel International Center17
Key Point: Arrival Confirmation
• When Postdoc Arrives at Stanford
– Postdoc must confirm arrival no later than 25th day after
program start date by submitting the J Arrival and
Insurance Confirmation webform:
http://icenter.stanford.edu/scholars/status/confirming.html
– If postdoc cannot arrive and confirm before 25th day, a
new amended DS-2019 showing later start date must be
issued prior to arrival or the record will become invalid. If
postdoc arrives and fails to report arrival by deadline,
he/she will be in violation of his/her visa status.
– Bechtel must validate record no later than 30 days after
program start date
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
Bechtel International Center18
Social Security Number Applications
• Administrators: Please advise International Postdocs
on Stanford-sponsored J visas:
– After Bechtel has validated SEVIS record, wait 2 weeks before
applying for SSN
– SEVIS record is validated within 3 business days after postdoc
submits J Arrival and Insurance Confirmation web form. If SEVIS
record can’t be validated because web form submitted is
incomplete, Bechtel will inform postdoc that he/she must resubmit
web form. Otherwise, postdoc should assume that record has been
validated within 3 days of submission of web form.
– It can take up to 2 weeks before SSN officials can see validation of
SEVIS record
– If SSN officials can’t see validation of SEVIS record, the SSN request
will be denied
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
Bechtel International Center19
Non-US MD Trainees (Assumes Incidental or Full
Patient Contact for the Purpose of Treatment)
• Bechtel only processes visa requests for postdoctoral
scholars in Research Scholar category with No Patient
Contact
• If your postdoc will have incidental or full patient
contact, you must contact Graduate Medical
Education at the hospital
• All visas and CA Med Board License exemption
approved by ECFMG and processed through GME;
None processed or reviewed by Bechtel or OPA
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
Bechtel International Center20
MDs on Visas: J-1 Visa Status Issue
• ECFMG will allow maximum of 7 years of clinical
scholar program
• Known issues with MDs conducting research prior to
completion of residency requirement
• MDs cannot be appointed to a research appointment
(without approval) prior to a clinical appointment as
this is considered a change in program
• Completion of studies and 2 year return home
requirement:
– J-1 Research Scholar status (24 month bar on re-issuance of a
DS-2019 for Research Scholar category)
– J-1 Clinical Scholar status (212.e - 2yr home country residency
requirement)
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
Bechtel International Center21
DS-2019 and Appointment Extensions
• OPA approval of DS-2019 extensions are
completed in combination with extensions of
the postdoctoral appointment
• The extended DS-2019 program end date must
match the appointment extension end date
– Please submit the appointment Change Request
and DS-2019 Extension Web Forms simultaneously
(within a few days of one another)
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
Bechtel International Center22
J-1 Visa Transfers
• A transfer is a change in sponsors, i.e., between
Stanford University and another institution (postdoc is
leaving one and coming to another).
• A change in departments within Stanford, or change
in faculty sponsors, is NOT a J-1 Transfer.
Important Things to Note In Transfers:
1. There can be no time gap between end of postdoc’s
app’t at current institution and start of app’t at the
new institution
– If transferring TO STANFORD, the Stanford program start date noted
on J Scholar Transfer Request form is the date that current
institution releases the record
2. No Change in J-1 Category
– Obtain copy of postdoc’s current DS-2019 to verify program end
date and J-1 category (must be Research Scholar)
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
Bechtel International Center23
Processing J-1 Visa Transfers
Transferring To Stanford:
• On the J Scholar Request form, note the name and
email address of int’l scholar advisor (not the P.I) at
postdoc’s current institution so that Bechtel can
contact that advisor and request the transfer
• Postdoc must be IN the U.S. on the transfer effective
date (i.e., start date of Stanford program) in order for
transfer to be completed by Bechtel
– Travel outside U.S. may need to be postponed until after
transfer has been completed
• Note postdoc’s home country address AND U.S.
address
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
Bechtel International Center24
Change of Visa Status
• A Change of Status is the switch between visa types:
i.e., from an F-1 to a J-1
• Most common for postdocs is switching from F-1 OPT
to J-1 or H-1B
• Most postdocs continue stay in F-1 OPT until the
expiration of their EAD (recommended) before the
required change in status
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
Bechtel International Center25
How Change of Status Takes Effect
To Request a Change of Status:
1. Start a new DS-2019 Request Form
2. Note on Request Form that postdoc is currently in the U.S. in another
visa status, a drop-down menu will appear asking you to indicate the
current visa status details and how the change of status will occur
3. Start as early as 3 months prior to the expiration of the current status
How Change of Status takes effect:
• By postdoc departure and Re-entry: HIGHLY recommended
– Start date on DS-2019 application should be the expected date of reentry
OR
• By USCIS change of status Approval by Mail: NOT recommended
(see next slide)
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
Bechtel International Center26
Change of Status by Mail
• NOT recommended? It takes 3+ months.
• If processing Change of Status by Mail, remember the following:
1. The program start date on DS-2019 request should be the first day
after end date on EAD; should approximate the expected approval
date of the change of status
2. Postdoc should not mail application for change of status earlier
than 3 months prior to program start date on DS-2019 and once
the application has been mailed, the postdoc should NOT depart
the U.S. until after it has been approved.
3. Postdoc must submit J Arrival and Insurance Confirmation webform
as soon as the change of status has been approved or by the 25th
day after the program start date, whichever is earlier, so that
record can be validated.
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
Bechtel International Center27
Unpaid Leaves of Absence for J-1s
– Request should be made BEFORE the start of the leave's
occurrence, and immediately upon the need to take a leave
– Requests must be reviewed in accordance with J-1 program
regulations which require pursuance of J program
objectives while in the U.S.
– Not all unpaid leave of absence requests are approved on
policy grounds.
– Requests will not be approved if they are determined to be
a violation of the visa status.
– The University is required to report infractions in the
scholar's SEVIS record
– Documentation to support the request may be required in
order to review any leave requests
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
Bechtel International Center28
H-1B (and other) Employment Visas
for Postdocs
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
Bechtel International Center29
H-1B Visa Terms and Conditions
1. Job Specific
-- Can limit the career path of postdoc; defined as employment
-- No significant change in responsibilities without USCIS approval
1. Postdoc is Ineligible to Receive Stanford or Externally
Competitive National Fellowships
-- Must be salaried on university grants
-- Department must ensure sufficient funds are available to support
the postdoc during the appointment period
2. H-1B is a Specialty Occupation Visa
-- Must demonstrate that special educational preparation is required
3. Prevailing Wage (Market Rate)
-- Postdoc must be paid a prevailing wage rate
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
Bechtel International Center30
H-1B Visa Terms and Conditions continued
5. Early Termination (by Stanford)
– Faculty Sponsor or Department required to pay for postdoc’s
return airfare home
6. Responsibility for Fees
– Department or Faculty sponsor may not ask postdoc to pay
fees associated with filing the petition if prohibited by law,
university policy, or if it results in a reduction of the scholar’s
funding to a level below Stanford’s required minimum level of
support
7. Sign-off on Commitment
– Department Chair, Director of Finance & Administration,
Department Manager, or Administrative Services Manager
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
Bechtel International Center31
H-1B Employment Visa Policy
• See Research Policy Handbook Chapter 9.4B:
http://rph.stanford.edu/9-4B.html
– OPA’s H-1B policies and visa request form now
extend to E-3 visa requests (employment visa for
Australian citizens)
• All foreign nationals holding a postdoctoral scholar
position are expected to come to Stanford in J-1
status
• In compelling circumstances following review and
approval, Stanford may sponsor a postdoctoral
scholar for an H-1B visa
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
Bechtel International Center32
Compelling Circumstances for H-1B Visa
• The following circumstances allow for
Stanford sponsorship of an H-1B visa:
1. Postdoc is currently in valid H-1B status
2. Postdoc has pending US permanent residence
(requires I-485 document)
3. Postdoc is married to US citizen or permanent
resident
4. Postdoc received doctoral degree in the US on an F-1
visa and is currently completing Optional Practical
Training (OPT) Postdoc has exhausted 5 years in J-1
status
5. Postdoc has exhausted 5 years in J-1 status
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
Bechtel International Center33
Other Possible Exceptions for H-1B Visa
• In other circumstances, the department
may petition the H-1B Review Board for
exception to J-1 visa policy:
1. Postdoc has obtained a J-1 waiver
2. Postdoc is subject to the 24 month repeat
participation bar
3. Postdoc has received a comparable offer
outside Stanford with an H-1B visa
commitment
4. No other qualified candidates are available or
identified (requires supporting documentation)
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
Bechtel International Center34
Implications of a J-1 Waiver
• Background
– Postdocs in J-1 status may pursue a waiver of the 2 year home
return rule on their own; Stanford is not involved
– Bechtel does not provide advice or assistance in pursuing a waiver
• Implications of Postdocs Obtaining J-1 Waivers
– USCIS approval of waiver renders J-1 status non-extendable
• J-1 status ends at current DS-2019 expiration date
– Non-extendable J-1 status renders postdoc appointment nonrenewable, unless:
• Department and hiring faculty are willing and able to sponsor an H-1B
exception petition, AND
• H-1B Review Board approves the petition
– If J-1 status expires during the pendency of H-1B application period
the postdoc is ineligible to work
– Scholars interested in pursuing J-1 waivers are strongly encouraged
to discuss with faculty sponsor before seeking a waiver and should
be reminded that a waiver will prevent further extension of their
current J status
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
Bechtel International Center35
Submission of H-1B Petition to OPA
• OPA H1B process requires three separate actions:
– Submit a postdoc web form via AXESS
• Recommendation Form (new appointments)
• Change Request (appointment extensions)
– Complete a paper H-1B Visa Request and Petition at
http://postdocs.stanford.edu/admin/pdf-forms/H-1B.pdf
• Upload Request form and supporting visa documents to
Recommendation Form (new appointments)
• Submit Request form and supporting visa documents to
[email protected] (appointment extensions)
– Submit an Employment Visa web form via AXESS
• OPA’s H-1B approval is submitted via Bechtel’s
Employment Visa Web Form
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
Bechtel International Center36
H-1B Employment Visa Request Form
Visa start date (may or may not match appointment start date
DO NOT check if not in H or E status
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
Bechtel International Center37
H-1B Employment Visa Request Form
Asterisked items incur the $900 fee noted below
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
Bechtel International Center38
H-1B Employment Visa Request Form, p.2
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
Bechtel International Center39
Implementation Guidelines and Meeting Dates
• H-1B Implementation Guidelines
– Instructions for H-1B Requests and the
Postdoc Web Forms System
– Review Board Meeting Dates and Document
Submission Deadlines
http://postdocs.stanford.edu/secure/H-1B_Implementation_Guidelines.pdf
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
Bechtel International Center40
H-1B Visa Process – Quick Review
• Submit to OPA:
– Recommendation Web
Form (new appt)
– Change Request Web
Form (extend appt)
– H-1B Visa Request Petition
(paper form)
– New Appts - upload to Rec Form
– Change Requests - email to
[email protected] )
Updated OPA Visa Page:
http://postdocs.stanford
.edu/admin/howto/visas.html
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
• Submit to BECHTEL:
– Employment Visa Web
Form (routes to OPA for approval)
– Dossier of supporting
documents
– Fee payment checks
OPA’s H-1B visa
approval is submitted
via Bechtel’s Online
Employment Visa Web
Form
Bechtel International Center41
Resources
Bechtel International Center
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
• Lynn Kroner
• Al Murray
– J-1 Exchange Visitors
– [email protected]
– http://icenter.stanford.edu/
• Brian Groves
– H-1B Employment Visas
– [email protected]
– http://icenter.stanford.edu/
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
– SOM Postdoctoral Appointments
– [email protected]
– http://postdocs.stanford.edu/
• Tammy Jo Wilson
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–
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University Postdoctoral Appointments
H-1B Review Board
[email protected]
http://postdocs.stanford.edu/
Bechtel International Center42
Open Forum
Questions?
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Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
Bechtel International Center43

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