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Hiring Policy and Payment Procedures for Foreign Nationals

To ensure compliance with U.S. employment and immigration laws, the Associate Director, Human Resources must be contacted as soon as possible, at 291-4353, whenever:

  • a department plans to bring a foreign national to campus for a short-term assignment or lecture, and wishes to provide payment for services and/or reimbursement for expenses, or
  • an individual who is not a U.S. citizen is hired for a position at the College.

A foreign national's ability to be employed and compensated in the United States depends on the regulations governing his/her visa. The Associate Director, Human Resources will work with the appropriate administrative or academic department and the foreign national to coordinate the visa application process. Except in limited circumstances, most visas allow a foreign national to be employed and compensated only by his/her sponsoring institution, for a fixed period of time, and for a specific activity.

Neither the Business Office nor Human Resources may authorize payment to a foreign national in violation of any federal or state regulations.

Taxpayer Identification Number

To be eligible to receive payment from the College, a foreign national must have either a Social Security number or an individual Taxpayer Identification Number (T.I.N.). Unless a foreign national has a valid Social Security number, he/she must apply for a T.I.N. through the U.S. government well before his/her scheduled arrival at Franklin & Marshall. Processing times vary and may take as long as 6 months. The foreign national or the manager/department chair hiring the individual should contact the Associate Director, Human Resources for information regarding applying for a T.I.N.

Short-term Visits

As soon as a department begins arranging for a foreign national (i.e., non-U.S. resident) to work on campus or give a lecture, a department representative must provide the Associate Director, Human Resources with the following information:

  1. The duration of the foreign national's stay in the U.S.
  2. The type of visa held by the foreign national and the name of the sponsoring institution.
  3. The amount of compensation to be provided by Franklin & Marshall.

In addition, the visitor, or a representative from the department sponsoring the visit, is asked to complete an Employment Questionnaire: Foreign Nationals, and promptly return it to the Associate Director, Human Resources. This questionnaire is also available in eDisk, in the Human Resources public folder.

The information listed above must be provided to Human Resources as far in advance of the visit to campus as possible. Human Resources must be contacted in advance even if the foreign national holds a visa sponsored by another institution. Delays in providing the necessary information may result in delays in issuing payment to the visitor. Please note, payment may not be permissible by law in some cases.

Employment for a Semester or Longer

As soon as employment has been offered to a non-U.S. resident, the Associate Director, Human Resources is to be contacted. The Associate Director will work with the Office of the Provost and/or the appropriate administrative or academic department to obtain the appropriate visa for any new employee who is not currently able to legally work in the U.S. and/or for the College. The new employee or a member of his/her department is asked to complete an Employment Questionnaire: Foreign Nationals, and promptly return it to the Associate Director, Human Resources. This questionnaire is also available in eDisk, in the Human Resources public folder. This questionnaire will help Human Resources determine whether an application for a visa must be initiated and if so, the type of visa which must be obtained.

Visa Classifications

B-1 / B-2 Visa:

Who Qualifies: Individuals in the U.S. for a short time to engage in certain business activities.

Employment Restrictions: B-1 / B-2 visitors may be paid an honorarium and reimbursed for associated incidental expenses for usual academic activities (lasting not longer than 9 days at any single institution), if: such payment is offered by an institution of higher education or non-profit organization affiliated with an institution of higher education, and the foreign visitor has not accepted such payment or expense reimbursement from more than 5 institutions or organizations within the previous 6 month period.

J-1 Visa; Professor, Research Scholar, or Student:

Who Qualifies: Individuals in the U.S. as research scholars or professors, generally for more than a month but less than 5 years. A J-2 visa will be necessary if the visitor is bringing his/her spouse and/or children to the U.S. Individuals who have previously held a J-1 visa may be subject to a 12-month or 24 month bar before being eligible for another J-1 visa.  Those on a tenure-track appointment are not eligible for a J-1 visa.

Maximum Stay: 5 years, with a 6 month extension granted under certain circumstances. The J-1 visa holder must leave the U.S. within 30 days of the expiration date on the DS-2019 form.

Time Needed to Process Visa Application: Once the necessary information is provided by the foreign national, a DS-2019 form is entered online by Human Resources and mailed to the J-1 applicant. If the J-1 applicant is outside the U.S., the form must be taken to the nearest U.S. consulate in his/her home country for processing.

Employment Restrictions: The institution listed on the DS-2019 form as the "Designated Program Sponsor" may provide payment to the visitor during the time period listed on the DS-2019. Under limited circumstances, and with prior written authorization from the College's "Responsible Officer", the visitor may receive compensation from other institutions if listed on the DS-2019.

If the J-1 visa holder travels outside the U.S. while on a J-1 visa, the College's "Responsible Officer" must sign the DS-2019 form to verify the visitor is in good standing. Human Resources must be contacted in advance if the visa holder or his/her dependents plan a trip outside the U.S.

H-1B Visa; Temporary Worker in a Specialty Occupation:

Who Qualifies: Individuals in the U.S. to perform professional services for a sponsoring employer in a specific position for a fixed period of time. This generally includes scholars who plan to be in the U.S. for more than 3 years or have been offered a tenure-track faculty appointment.

Maximum Stay: Generally 6 years.

Time Needed to Process Visa Application: Once Human Resources is contacted and provided with necessary information, it may take up to 6 months for the visa application to be processed.

Employment Restrictions: Employment is permitted only with the sponsoring institution(s).

H-1B visas are "portable"; once a new employer files an H-1B petition for an individual already holding an H-1B from another institution, that individual may begin employment with the new employer while the petition is being processed.

If a foreign national plans to apply for permanent residency in the U.S., an application must be filed by the College with the Department of Labor within 18 months of the time the foreign national was first offered a tenure-track position at the College, in order to avoid the necessity of re-advertising the tenure-track position.

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Policy Maintained by: Human Resources, Director

Last Reviewed: August 12, 2014