Immigration Sponsorship Policy
Yale’s immigration sponsorship policy supports the University's mission to admit talented students regardless of citizenship and immigration status and to hire and retain a world-class faculty and researchers. OISS oversees nonimmigrant visa sponsorship for eligible students, full-time faculty, and research scholars, as well as permanent residence sponsorship for tenure-track and tenured faculty. Requests for permanent residence sponsorship for full-time senior research staff are reviewed on a case-by-case basis.
OISS represents Yale in the administration of F-1 Student and J-1 Exchange Visitor program and the Student Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP) ensuring that all DHS and DOS federal reporting requirements are met.
OISS staff have the authority and responsibility to submit to USCIS (and DOL) all employment-based immigration petitions (E-3, H-1B, O-1) and employment-based permanent residence applications (EB-1B and EB-2) sponsored by Yale University.
OISS is the only entity authorized to sign immigration petitions and applications on behalf of the University.
The use of outside counsel for Yale-sponsored immigration matters is not permitted without OISS review and approval.
Yale’s immigration sponsorship policy supports the University's mission to admit talented students regardless of citizenship and immigration status and to hire and retain world-class faculty and researchers. To that end, Yale’s visa sponsorship policy is primarily reserved for academic appointments. Because staff positions are not academic appointments, by default they are not eligible for visa sponsorship. Supporting non-immigrant and immigrant visa petitions for M&P staff positions may be pursued only for the most senior positions AND only after review and approval from Human Resources (HR) and the Office of General Counsel (OGC). If the sponsorship is approved, the appropriate visa classification for staff positions is the H-1B visa, and both the visa-sponsored individual and the position must be able to qualify under all regulatory criteria for the H-1B status. Until H-1B eligibility is established and confirmed, a hiring unit must hold off extending an offer of the position to the candidate.
The same rules apply to requests for permanent residence sponsorship for professional staff positions (M&P) and are reviewed on a case-by-case basis. These also require approval from HR and OGC. If approval is extended, AND the legal eligibility of all the elements of the request is confirmed, OISS will work with the hiring unit on determining the appropriate outside counsel. While these cases are not done by OISS, OISS oversees the process to ensure institutional compliance.
Individuals in C&T or casual positions and M&P positions at lower grades are not eligible for Yale visa sponsorship. However, they may be hired if they have their own work permission (J-2 EAD, F-1 OPT) as long as the position conditions comply with the visa's work permission rules (if any) and the job offer does not exceed the work permit validity.
Working Together: Roles & Responsibilities
Navigating U.S. immigration regulations is complicated, subject to delays and changes, and requires the full attention and participation of the hiring department, the scholar and OISS. At the outset, working with the department and the scholar, OISS will review the many factors and determine the most appropriate status for each individual.
OISS works with departments and scholar to identify the most appropriate visa and then works with both parties to acquire the status, as well as any extensions, including the preparation of any employer-based petitions to USCIS and DOL. In addition, OISS, will collect all relevant data necessary to meet all federal reporting requirements for both non-immigrant and permanent resident statuses.
OISS also provides training and updated information on employment-based related topics to host departments.
The faculty host and department administrator play a key role in the process of acquiring the correct visa status for a new scholar, as well as ensuring the scholar maintains a status that permits Yale employment and/or affiliation throughout the appointment period. Specifically, the department will:
- Ensure that all institutional protocols for hiring and appointment are followed, including ensuring the scholar has received information about the terms of appointment.
- Determine if immigration sponsorship is required and work with OISS as soon as the appointment is confirmed to identify more appropriate visa status.
- Initiate the process creating an OISS Connect record and provide all required information and documentation until the visa document is prepared and the individual has arrived.
- Monitor arrival dates and inform OISS of any delays and no-shows.
- Assist with onboarding and ensure the new arrival completes the OISS check-in.
- Report to OISS any change in the Yale appointment (e.g. title, funding, location and duties).
- Initiate well in advance any extension of the original appointment.
- Notify OISS if scholar leaves before the expiration date on the current visa document.
Quarterly Newsletter for Departments
Sign up for the OISS Department Newsletter to receive a quarterly informational digest for our department partners with recent news, events, and reminders related to hosting international faculty, researchers, and employees. Find it on the Yale Email Subscriptions page - it's listed as 'OISS Department Newsletter'.