I-9 Process for Foreign National Faculty, Staff, and Student Workers

Go to:

Background

The University of Minnesota requires all newly hired students, staff, and faculty members to complete the federal I-9 form and provide the needed documentation to demonstrate eligibility to work at the University on or before their first day of work for pay. If the new hire is unable to provide the documents to complete the I-9 on their first day, they may not be allowed to start work or remain in the workplace until they present the required documents. 

International student and faculty and staff can complete their I-9 and tax documents at OHR Foreign National Support Desk in the Donhowe Building. On coordinate campuses, contact your Human Resources representative for information on foreign national I-9 processing on your campus.

If international faculty, staff, or student workers don't already have a Social Security number, they should apply for a number with the Social Security Administration before completing the I-9 process at Payroll Services. See Social Security Number Requirements for more information about applying for a Social Security number.

Back to top

I-9 Process for Foreign National Faculty, Staff, and Student Workers

When an international student arrives on campus, they must first check in with the International Student and Scholar Services Office (ISSS) on campus so the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS) record can be activated. This is a required immigration check-in process and must be completed before applying for a Social Security number.

The ISSS website explains the process for foreign national student workers (and departments) to follow when applying for a Social Security number. The student must have proof of a job (or job offer) and present that proof along with the standard documentation. ISSS has a template for the hiring department to complete for the student.

Foreign nationals must apply for a Social Security number before they can complete the I-9 form. Everyone who applies for a Social Security number will receive a receipt of application from the Social Security Administration office. This receipt is required to complete their I-9 form. The student brings the receipt or letter to the Foreign National Employee Service desk in OHR Operations and completes the Online I-9 with help from a central I-9 administrator.

Faculty, staff, and student workers can begin work as long as they have applied for a Social Security number, completed Section 1 of the I-9 form, and have presented their original documentation to verify employment eligibility on their first day of work for pay.

Back to top

Required Documents by Type of Visa

Note that employment eligibility verification for permanent residents is processed in the employing unit the same way as for citizens.

F-1 Student

  1. Valid, unexpired passport
  2. Most current Form I-94 (Arrival/Departure Record)
  3. Form I-20 (Certificate of Eligibility for Nonimmigrant Student Status) stamped by Immigration and issued for University of Minnesota,
  • OR: I-20 indicating transfer to U of M (If ISSS sign-off date is within 15 days of semester begin date, then semester start date can be employment date)
  • OR: I-20 indicating "curricular practical training" shown on page 2 of Form I-20

OPT (Optional Practical Training)/F1T

Optional or post-completion practical training shown on USCIS (U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services)-issued I-766/EAD (passport and I-94 not required with I I-766/EAD card)

J-1 Student or Scholar

  1. Valid, unexpired passport
  2. Most current Form I-94 (Arrival/Departure Record)
  3. DS-2019 (Certificate of Eligibility for Exchange Visitor [J-1] Status) stamped by Immigration and issued for University of Minnesota,
  • OR: DS-2019 indicating sponsorship transferred to U of M. Sign-off dates must be prior to effective begin date of DS-2019

J1 Practical Training/J1T

  1. Valid, unexpired passport
  2. Most current I-9
  3. DS-2019 (Certificate of Eligibility for Exchange Visitor [J-1] Status), issued from University of Minnesota or another institution, indicating academic training has been granted. Must be accompanied by a letter from the sponsor.

H-1B Temporary Professional

New to H-1B status:

  1. Valid, unexpired passport, Form I-94 (Arrival/Departure Record)
  2. I-797 Approval Notice showing University of Minnesota as petitioner (employer)

Current H-1B Changing Employer to U of M

  1. Valid, unexpired passport, Form I-94 (Arrival/Departure Record) for current employer, and
  2. I-797 Receipt Notice showing application for employer change to University of Minnesota.

When the I-797 Approval Notice with U of M as petitioner is received, the foreign national must return to Payroll Services to show the Approval Notice for I-9 purposes.

TN―Trade NAFTA Visa Holder

  1. Valid, unexpired passport
  2. Form I-94 (Arrival/Departure Record), and invitation letter from University of Minnesota

J-2 or H4 Visa Holder, or Other Employment Authorization Status

Other employment authorization status may include residency pending, application for asylum, or refugee:

  1. J-2 visa
  2. Immigration-issued EAD (Employment Authorization Document)/I-766 card

Resident Alien on a Temporary Status

  1. Alien registration card (I-551, green card),
  2. Passport with stamp "Processed for Temporary Evidence of Lawful Admission for Permanent Residence, Valid Until (date) employment authorized"

Back to top

Extensions and Changes in Status

J1 Extension

  • Employment expires when DS-2019 expires.
  • If extended before expiration date, there is no break in service.
  • If extended after the current DS-2019 expiration date, the effective date becomes the date the sponsor signed off on the form, not the begin date of the new DS-2019.

F-1 Extension

  • If the expected date to complete studies has expired, the faculty, staff, or student worker must be issued a new Form I-20 (Certificate of Eligibility for Nonimmigrant Student Status) to continue employment. The new I-20 must have an effective date immediately following the completion of studies to continue to work without a break in service.
  • If the training that justifies the extension is curricular, it must be noted on page 2 of the I-20.

OPT/F1T Extension

  • Official receipt from USCIS stating that they have received the application for extension.
  • Expiring EAD card

H-1B

  • If the faculty, staff, or student worker can produce an I-797 Receipt Notice from USCIS verifying that they applied for an extension before the H-1B expiration, they can continue to be employed for 120 days, pending USCIS approval.
  • The faculty, staff, or student worker must present the I-797 Approval Notice in person at Payroll Services when it is received.
  • If the faculty, staff, or student worker has had a change in status to their H-1B (such as from F-1 student to H-1B visa holder), they must show both the I-757 Approval Notice and I-94 (attached to approval). If USCIS does not approve the change in status to H-1B by the expiration date of the current status, the person may not be employed pending the H-1B approval.

Other Employment Authorization Extension

  • J-2 visa holders, pending residents, asylees, refugees, etc., must present a USCIS-extended EAD card (I-766) to continue to be employment authorized. The extension must be given before the original expiration date.
  • For certain visa types, if the faculty, staff, or student worker can produce an official receipt from USCIS verifying that they applied for an extension before the H-1B expiration, they can continue to be employed for 120 days, pending USCIS approval. For additional clarification, please email or call the OHR Contact Center.

Back to top

Contact Us

For I-9 questions or more detailed information, email or call the OHR Contact Center (ohr@umn.edu, 4-UOHR, 612-624-8647 or 800-756-2363).

I-9 Resources

Online I-9 System

  • Use I-9 Express to enter, verify, and document employment eligibility for new hires.

Training and User Guides

I-9 Administrators :

Employees:

General:

Contact

  • For I-9 questions or more information, email or call the OHR Contact Center (ohr@umn.edu, 4-UOHR, 612-624-8647 or 800-756-2363).

Back to top