Permanent Residence

UTSA colleges, departments, and institutes are increasingly attracting international job applicants and hiring more foreign national faculty and staff members.  In some cases, the hiring UTSA organization will decide to sponsor the international employee for permanent employment authorization.  

UTSA policy on the hiring of foreign nationals is set forth in the UTSA Handbook of Operating Procedures, 4.24 Hiring of Foreign Nationals:  http://www.utsa.edu/hop/chapter4/4-24.html

International Scholar Services has established a contract with UT System Office of General Counsel, that will allow UTSA (on behalf of the sponsoring department) to outsource all permanent residency requests (EB1, EB2, and Special Handling for tenure track teaching faculty positions. In case of Special Handling, the application must be submitted within 18 months of the offer of employment) to approved outside legal immigration counsel.   

Special Handling Overview and Procedure

Foreign nationals who have been selected through a competitive recruitment and selection process and who occupy certain teaching positions may be eligible to seek permanent residency through PERM Special Handling Labor Certification. The application must be filed with the U.S. Department of Labor (DoL) within 18 months of the job offer. The hiring department must demonstrate to DoL that after a competitive recruitment and selection process, the foreign national was found to be more qualified than any of the U.S. applicants.

Employing UTSA Department and/or Applicant are responsible for payment of $5,500 Legal fee for Permanent Residency petition.

The $5,500 fee is for attorney costs and services.  It does not include the (additional) federal application processing fees required to be paid to the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS).  A sample of filing fees typically required by the USCIS is attached here.

Departments desiring to sponsor a foreign national for permanent residency must first complete and submit the UTSA Legal Permanent Resident request form.

The form must be reviewed, approved, and signed by the sponsoring department chair and the college dean (or vice president, if applicable). The request form is forwarded to the Vice Provost/Senior International Officer (via International Scholar Services) for final approval and subsequent referral to outside counsel.

Once referred, the sponsoring department will be contacted by the outside law firm to immediately begin processing the petitioner's permanent residency petition.

Use the Foreign National Hire Visa Chart to determine if you may be eligible for immigration/Green Card status.

* Effective October 1, 2017, faculty applying for employment-based Legal Permanent Residency (LPR) will be required to have an in-person interview at the local USCIS field office as part of its “extreme vetting” process. LPR applicants are allowed to hire an attorney to be present at the interview, but it is not required.