Permanent Residency (Green Card) Petitions
International employees who wish to apply for PR status based on their employment at UMASS must work with the International Programs Office (IPO). In order to pursue permanent residency, the applicant's position must meet certain minimum requirements. Employment based petitions are time-consuming and complex. IPO will provide advising to departments and employees on how best to achieve their employment goals.
The International Programs office will file employment based permanent residency petitions (Form I-140 Immigrant petition for Alien worker) for tenure track faculty. The category of filing will be determined after consulting with the employee.
All other employees who wish to apply for employment based permanent residency must use UMASS retained attorneys. UMass Approved Attorneys
The university cannot advise on applications that the employee is self-filing. These categories include petitions based on family ties, National Interest Waiver and Alien of Extraordinary Ability. USCIS Website. If an individuals seeks assistance with these applications they must consult an attorney.
Important Information for Employment Searches
Tenure Track Faculty
Advertising of the position must follow the guidelines under the Department of Labor special recruitment provisions for college or university professors. This is to insure that if the final candidate does not have U.S. citizenship or Permanent Residency (a green card), it will be possible to proceed with filing for permanent residency under the 2nd preference filing (university teacher). Any questions regarding these guidelines should be directed to Lori Prince at the Office of Equal Opportunity and Diversity.
Please note that these regulations are ONLY for filing under the 2nd preference filing category.
This application for permanent residency must be filed no later than 18 months after the alien was selected (the date of the offer letter, not the effective date of appointment). If the filing is later than 18 months after the offer letter, a new search for the position will have to be generated. This is a Department of Labor requirement and there is no exception to this provision.
The International Programs Office (IPO) will file the petition for permanent residency.
Non Tenure Track Faculty
If the position is a non-tenure track position (e.g., a lecturer), the hiring process must still follow the above rule regarding placement of a print advertisement, but should the department choose to sponsor the employee for permanent residency, IPO will not do the filing. One of the UMass Approved Attorneys must be used and will file all paperwork. The filing fee rates for the labor certification vary by attorney and MUST be paid by the University (the hiring department). As of September 2007, the average charge is approximately $3,000. The remainder of the attorney's fees can be paid by the employee.
The rule for doing a hard copy advertisement also applies for staff positions. However, there is a SIX month deadline for filing for permanent residency once the offer letter is given. In addition, no U.S. citizen who is minimally qualified for the position can be in the candidate pool in order for this search to be used in filing for a permanent residency. The fees the attorney charges for the labor certification process must be paid by the University and only UMass Approved Attorneys can be engaged.
All green card applications should be signed by Juan Jarrett, Assistant Vice Chancellor for Human Resources. No other employee of the University is authorized to sign.
Any questions regarding the above information should be directed to Nancy Condon at the International Programs Office by phone 545-2843 or nac[at]ipo.umass[dot]edu