The University of Delaware Sponsorship Policy for Pursuing Permanent Resident Status

Commencing January 1, 2010, the University of Delaware is instituting a centralized process for sponsoring certain Foreign National Employees for permanent resident status in the United States. The University of Delaware has partnered with the immigration law firm of Goldblum & Hess located in Jenkintown, Pennsylvania to provide legal counsel and assistance in the preparation and submission of the necessary applications and petitions to the United States Department of Labor (DOL) and the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS). Jane W. Goldblum, Esq. will serve as primary immigration counsel to the University. Younes Haboussi, Financial Analyst II - Payroll, Records Management & HR-IT, and Cathy Taylor, Foreign National Coordinator in Payroll, will coordinate the University's permanent residency sponsorship efforts in conjunction with the University's Office of Human Resources. After a Foreign National Employee has received the requisite authorization (as described at #2 below), Younes Haboussi (greencard@udel.edu) will be the contact person who will initiate with Goldblum & Hess such process.

All nonimmigrant visa petitions and applications (including H-1B, TN, and J visas as well as extensions of same) will continue to be processed by OISS.

The following will explain: 1) Which Foreign National Employees Qualify for Sponsorship; 2) The Process for Obtaining Authorization for Sponsorship; and 3) Fee Schedule.

Which Foreign National Employees Qualify for Sponsorship

The University of Delaware only will consider sponsoring Foreign National Employees holding "regular" positions. "Regular" positions are those which are full-time and either tenured or those having no fixed date of termination. Normally, the University will sponsor Foreign Nationals holding academic positions. However, in some instances, the University will sponsor nonacademic positions. United States immigration law prohibits employers from sponsoring Foreign Nationals holding temporary or part-time positions. Therefore, the University will not sponsor Foreign National students, nor will it sponsor temporary or part-time Foreign National Employees.

Foreign Nationals Holding Academic Positions

The University of Delaware will sponsor, when feasible under the immigration laws of the United States, all Foreign National Employees holding positions with an academic designation. Such positions include, but are not limited to: Professors, Assistant Professors, Associate Professors, Instructors and Research Associates holding positions that are not directly linked to grant funding. Research Associates holding positions that are contingent upon grant funding will be eligible for sponsorship if the grant is readily renewable or the Department in which the Foreign National is employed has funding for similar research for at least three years. Post-doctoral fellowships and single-year contract researchers generally will not qualify for sponsorship. If you are unsure whether or not a position will qualify for sponsorship, please contact the Payroll office who will, when appropriate, seek guidance from Goldblum & Hess.

The University of Delaware, with the advice and guidance of Goldblum & Hess, will determine the most effective and efficient means of pursuing sponsorship on behalf of its Foreign National Employees. Factors that will be considered in making such a determination include the Foreign National's credentials including area of academic concentration; nationality with a focus on visa retrogression; date of selection or hire; nonimmigrant visa classification and years in same; and admissibility. The University will consider and pursue, as appropriate, sponsorship through:

  • EB-1 (Employment-Based First Preference) classification for Outstanding Researchers/Professors (checklist);
  • EB-2  (Employment-Based Second Preference) classification for those holding positions that qualify for a National Interest Waiver; and/or
  • EB-2 (Employment-Based Second Preference) classification for those positions that entail some classroom teaching and qualify for the Department of Labor's Special Recruitment/PERM Labor Certification Process.  

If a Foreign National Employee does not qualify for sponsorship through the University, such Employee may be eligible to pursue permanent residency through self-sponsorship by utilizing either the EB-1 "Alien of Extraordinary Ability" classification or the EB-2 "National Interest Waiver" classification.  Goldblum & Hess offers free 1/2 hour consultations relating to same.

Foreign Nationals Holding Nonacademic Positions

Foreign National Employees holding nonacademic positions (such as Campus Information Technology Associates), will be sponsored only if such Employees are deemed eligible. When eligible, the University will utilize the Department of Labor's Regular PERM/Labor Certification process. The Regular PERM/Labor Certification process entails a test of the labor market to determine if there are any minimally qualified United States workers available to assume the position held by the Foreign National Employee. A subsequent immigrant visa petition (either EB-2 or EB-3) only can be filed if the University's recruitment effort is unsuccessful and the Department of Labor 'certifies' such effort.

The University, in light of the perceived availability of minimally qualified United States workers for most nonacademic positions, has adopted a policy of not offering sponsorship for nonacademic positions. However, the University will sponsor "eligible" Foreign Nationals holding nonacademic positions who have obtained a Policy Waiver. Please see #2 below for more information regarding the process for obtaining such Policy Waiver.

The Process for Obtaining Authorization for Sponsorship

Foreign Nationals Holding Academic Positions

The Foreign National Employee first must complete a Permanent Residency Worksheet which elicits key biographic information as well as information regarding his/her area of academic specialization. Once completed, the Foreign National Employee must have his/her Department Chair or Supervisor sign the Permanent Residency Worksheet. Such signature signifies the Department or Division's willingness to sponsor the Foreign National Employee. The completed Permanent Residency Worksheet is then forwarded to Payroll via email (greencard@udel.edu).

Once Payroll receives the signed Permanent Residency Worksheet, the Payroll office will contact, if appropriate, the Office of Human Resources for its authorization to commence sponsorship. Once Payroll receives final authorization, it will provide the Foreign National Employee and the Department Chair or Supervisor with questionnaires that, once completed and returned to Payroll, will be forwarded to Goldblum & Hess for analysis and commencement of the appropriate process. Please note that processing times will vary based on the process followed and visa availability (based on the country of nationality and the classification pursued). Please also note that even if the University chooses to sponsor a Foreign National Employee for permanent resident status, attainment of this benefit is not guaranteed until final approval by the USCIS.

Foreign Nationals Holding Nonacademic Positions

Foreign National Employees holding nonacademic positions must obtain both a signed Permanent Residency Worksheet, following the process described above for academic positions; and obtain a Policy Waiver in order for the University of Delaware to commence the permanent residency process. In general, a Policy Waiver Application must be completed and signed by the Foreign National Employee's Supervisor; setting forth the reasons why the Foreign National Employee's nonacademic role is essential to the University and explaining why the Department believes the position would be hard to fill through normal recruitment measures. The signed Policy Waiver Application together with the signed Permanent Residency Worksheet should be forwarded by email to Payroll (greencard@udel.edu). Each Policy Waiver Application will be reviewed and assessed on a case-by-case basis by Payroll in conjunction with the Office of Human Resources. Please note that the mere submission of a Policy Waiver Application does not guarantee that the University will pursue the permanent resident process on behalf of a Foreign National Employee holding a nonacademic position.

Fee Schedule

DOL regulations necessitate that all costs associated with the PERM/Labor Certification Process must be paid for by the sponsoring employer. At this time, there is no similar USCIS regulation relating to Employment Based Petitions or relating to Applications for Permanent Residence. However, the University of Delaware, in an effort to provide the same support to all Foreign National Employees, will pay for a set portion of any permanent residency process, regardless of whether or not a PERM/Labor Certification Application is required. Such costs will be furnished by the Foreign National's Department or Division. Please note that any and all remaining fees associated with the permanent residency process must be paid for by the Foreign National Employee, including both the legal and filing fees for derivative family members. Please also note a Foreign National Employee who has commenced his/her permanent residency process prior to January 1, 2010, will not be reimbursed for any payments to third party legal counsel or to the USCIS, except where required by law.   

The University of Delaware, as the Employer and Petitioner, requires that all PERM/Labor Certification Applications and all I-140 Immigrant Petitions be processed through Goldblum & Hess. The University of Delaware strongly encourages Foreign National Employees also to take advantage of Goldblum & Hess' services (and reduced fees) for the corresponding I-485 Application for Permanent Resident Status.

The following charts outline the fee schedule for the permanent residency process:  

Permanent Residency Applications
Goldblum & Hess Fees:

Legal Fees:

Who is Responsible for Payment:

SPECIAL RECRUITMENT PERM/Labor Certification

$2,000

University of Delaware

I-140 Immigrant Petition with Certified Labor Certification

$2,750

Foreign National

I-140 Immigrant Petition without Labor Certification for:

  • Outstanding Professor/Researcher
  • National Interest Waiver
  • Extraordinary Ability
  • Schedule A Exceptional Ability

$5,250

 

Foreign National & University of Delaware

($2,000.00 may be paid by the University for University-sponsored Petitions)

I-485  Application for Permanent Resident Status

$750

Foreign National

I-485 Application for Permanent Resident Status for eligible derivatives:

$750 per derivative

Foreign National



Permanent Residency Applications
USCIS Fees:

Filing  Fees:

Who is responsible for Payment:

I-140 Immigrant Petition with Certified Labor Certification

$580

($1,225 for premium processing)

Foreign National

 I-140 Immigrant Petition for:

  • Outstanding Professor/Researcher
  • National Interest Waiver
  • Extraordinary Ability
  • Schedule A Exceptional Ability

$580.00

($1,225 for premium processing)

Foreign National

I-485  Application to Adjust Status

$1,070.00

Foreign National

I-485 Application to Adjust Status for eligible dependents:

$1,070 per dependent ($600 per dependent under the age of 14)

Foreign National

Questions and Comments

Please direct any and all queries relating to the above to Payroll (greencard@udel.edu).