United States Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS)
On March 1, 2003, service and benefit functions of the U.S. Immigration and Naturalization Services (INS) transitioned into the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) as the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).
Foreign Faculty Appointment Information
The following information on appointing foreign faculty at CSULB relates to visa/legal immigration classification.
CSULB is not committed to processing any particular visa application for a given foreign faculty appointment. Final approval rests with the Provost and is based upon the University's need to make an appointment by a specific date and to be able to process visas in a timely way.
The following information is brief and may not address all situations involved in obtaining work authorization for such individuals. Each individual has unique circumstances related to his/her employment eligibility. These procedures apply to individuals who are not U.S. citizens or permanent residents. Employment is contingent upon proof of the legal right to work at CSULB effective with the appointment date. Work authorization is verified during the sign-in process at Payroll Services.
All applications are to be considered regardless of the applicant's eligibility to work in the U. S. at the time of application. Applicants are not required to provide information about their visa status during the search process. The SC-1 Form requires all applicants to respond to the following question:
Are you currently eligible to work in the US?
(Yes or No)
Please be aware that while the applicant may answer yes, he/she may not actually be eligible to work at CSULB under his/her current status. When the final selection has been made by the department or the Dean, it may be appropriate to ask applicant(s) about any visa requirements they may have that should be forwarded to the Provost as part of the recommendation for appointment.
Foreign Institution Degree
If the terminal degree required for appointment is from a foreign institution, it is necessary that the original document and a certified translation document be submitted to the Center for International Education for review as to its equivalency to a U.S. degree. The degree equivalency review is to be completed as part of the search process prior to submitting the appointment file to Academic Affairs.
Tenure-Track Faculty H-1B (Nonimmigrant visa; temporary worker)
The H-1B visa is the appropriate status for Tenure-track faculty at CSULB. Following the University's decision to request H-1B work status to appoint a tenure-track faculty member, the appointment letter from the Provost will contain information regarding the H-1B petition. Normally, an initial H-1B nonimmigrant visa is valid for a three year period with extensions possible for a maximum of six years. The six year maximum includes all previous employment under this classification.
Note: The Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs is the only University personnel that has signature authority to complete immigration forms and related documents.
Approval of the H-1B classification by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) takes approximately six months or more from submission of the petition. Departments/Deans should, therefore, submit such appointment files to Academic Affairs at least seven to eight months prior to the appointment date. Prospective faculty who are on an H-1B visa at another institution (including other CSU campuses and CSULB Foundation) must have a new H-1B processed with USCIS for employment at CSULB. First time H-1B faculty must have final USCIS approval before beginning employment. For those faculty who currently hold H-1B status elsewhere, the Receipt Notice provided by USCIS to the University indicating that the petition has been received for review is an acceptable document to begin employment.
The H-1B application fee (Form I-129) required by USCIS is currently $190.00 ($200.00 for dependents) and is paid by the faculty member. An additional mandatory fee of $500.00 (Fraud Prevention and Detection Fee) is paid by the College/Department from a non-general fund. In addition to all other fees, there is an option to expedite the review of the application (15 days) which currently costs $1,000.00 (Premium Processing Service Fee).
H-1B Visa to Permanent Residency
The H-1B classification provides foreign faculty the opportunity to consider a change in status to permanent resident, which must take place prior to the six year H-1B expiration. The Department Chairs/Search Committees are reminded of the necessity to keep detailed search records regarding reasons for selection/non-selection of U.S. citizen applicants. This information will be required should the faculty member seek permanent resident status such as the labor certification process.
TN Status (NAFTA Professional)
This one-year visa type is used for professionals who are citizens of Canada or Mexico.
J-1 Visa: Non-Immigrant Status
This temporary visa can be issued from one to three years and is not the approporate classification for tenure-track faculty.
Some countries require a "return service obligation to the home country" following completion of the J-1 assignment. Such a condition may prevent changing from this J-1 visa status to another status while in the U.S. The USIA Exchange Visitor Program remains the final authority on whether someone is subject to the home residence requirement under section 212(e).