Other Immigration Statuses
The O-1 temporary worker status is designated for individuals of extraordinary ability in the sciences, education, business, arts or athletics and individuals of extraordinary achievement in the motion picture and television industries. The United States Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS) determines whether an individual qualifies for O-1 status. O-1 petitions may be applied for initially for up to 3 years and may be extended in one-year increments. In some circumstances KU will consider O-1 sponsorship.
O-1 Evidence Requirement
To qualify for O-1 status as an individual of extraordinary ability a foreign national must show that they meet the evidentiary requirement as outlined by USCIS (United States Citizenship and Immigration Services). The supporting documentation for an O-1A petition must include evidence that the beneficiary has received a major internationally recognized award (such as the Nobel Prize) or at least three of the following forms of evidence:
- Documentation of the beneficiary's receipt of nationally or internationally recognized prizes or awards for excellence in the field of endeavor;
- Documentation of the beneficiary's membership in associations in the field for which classification is sought, which require outstanding achievements of their members, as judged by recognized national or international experts in their disciplines or fields;
- Published material in professional or major trade publications or major media about the beneficiary, relating to the beneficiary's work in the field for which classification is sought, which must include the title, date, and author of such published material, and any necessary translation;
- Evidence of the beneficiary's participation on a panel, or individually, as a judge of the work of others in the same or in an allied field of specialization for which classification is sought;
- Evidence of the beneficiary's original scientific, scholarly, or business-related contributions of major significance in the field;
- Evidence of the beneficiary's authorship of scholarly articles in the field, in professional journals, or other major media;
- Evidence that the beneficiary has been employed in a critical or essential capacity for organizations and establishments that have a distinguished reputation; or
- Evidence that the beneficiary has either commanded a high salary or will command a high salary or other remuneration for services, as evidenced by contracts or other reliable evidence.
The North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) of 1994 established the TN non-immigrant visa category for Canadian and Mexican citizens. The TN visa category enables Mexican or Canadian citizens to be admitted to the United States to engage in business activities at a professional level in certain fields, for one or more specific employers. TN status may be granted for as long as the employment offer specifies, up to three years, and may be extended in three-year increments.
TN Eligibility Requirements
An applicant for TN status must:
- satisfactorily demonstrate to immigration authorities that the applicant will engage in employment which is on the list of qualifying professions»; and
- satisfactorily demonstrate to the USCIS that the position requires the individual to have at least a baccalaureate degree or appropriate credentials demonstrating status as a professional; and
- satisfactorily demonstrate to the USCIS that the applicant possesses the requisite educational background and experience for that profession.
For details on the TN visa category please visit the Department of State website».
F-1 OPT & OPT Stem Extension
Optional Practical Training (OPT) is work authorization that is authorized by USCIS for international students in F-1 status. To begin work the employee must present a valid Employment Authorization Document (EAD) issued by USCIS. OPT employment is required to be related to the student's field of study. Immigration advising for individuals in F-1 status is provided by their degree granting university. If the employee graduated from KU, then the International Support Services office would continue to advise the graduated KU student and help them maintain their immigration status. OPT employment may be full-time or part-time and there is not a restriction on the specific position type/title at KU in which the person may be employed. OPT is authorized for a maximum of 12 months per instance.
OPT Stem Extension
For individuals in F-1 status who have completed degrees in certain Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) eligible fields, they are able to extend their OPT for an additional 24 months. The individual can receive this extension by working with the international office at their degree granting university (ISS for KU graduates) to apply to USCIS for the extension. In addition to having completed a degree in an eligible STEM field, the inividual must have a job offer or be working for an employer registered with "E-Verify," a federal employment verification system (KU is registered with E-Verify)
Below is information that OPT STEM EXTENSION applicants will need for their immigration applications:
- University of Kansas E-Verify Number: 264014
- Employer Name: The University of Kansas
- Employer Address: 1450 Jayhawk Boulevard, Lawrence, Kansas 66045
- Employer Website URL: www.ku.edu
- Employer ID Number (EIN): 48-1124839
- Number of Full-Time Employees in U.S.: 9,722
- North American Industry Classification System Code: 611310
Overview of the Visitor Visa
The B-1 visa is for a visitor coming temporarily to the United States generally for short business. The B-2 visa is generally for tourism or medical treatment. Visitors may use the B-1 visa for brief stays, usually less than six months, to participate in scientific, educational, professional or business conventions, conferences, or seminars. The B visa is not appropriate for students, long-term scholars, or employees coming to the University of Kansas.
Visa Waiver Program
Citizens of a limited number of countries are permitted to visit the United States up to 90 days without a B-1/B-2 visa under the Visa Waiver Program. Visitors entering for business purposes are admitted in WB status and visitors entering for pleasure are admitted in WT status.
The B-1/B-2 and WB/WT categories are very similar but they do have some important differences. Visitors admitted in WB/WT status cannot extend their permission to remain in the United States beyond 90 days and they cannot apply for a change of status.
They must fulfill certain passport requirements and pre-screening requirements. Individuals visiting the United States under the Visa Waiver Program will need pre-clearance authorization called ESTA prior to traveling. They must present evidence of ESTA approval at the port of entry to the United States. Please be sure to print out the approval when applying for ESTA.
Employment is not permitted on the B visa. However, a B-1 visitor may be given reimbursement for travel and living expenses. A B-1 visitor may be paid an honorarium for "usual academic activities" as long as the academic activity does not last longer than nine days at any institution and the visitor may not have accepted similar payments from more than five institutions during the previous six months.
Obtaining a B visa
Individuals should contact the U.S. embassy or consulate in their country for instructions on the visa application process and processing times. There is no visa document specific to the B visa, but applicants must show the purpose of the visit to the United States. If a KU department is inviting the B visitor on official business an invitation letter may be necessary. Any letter should contain the purpose of the visit and the following information:
- the nature of the visit is temporary
- the individual will not be a salaried employee
- the individual has their own funding (name source)
- the individual's position/occupation in their home country
- the individual will have return passage
Employers are required to withhold 30% of the honorarium payment for tax purposes. B visitors are not eligible to obtain a Social Security Number or an Individual Tax Identification Number.