USE OF ATTORNEYS FOR IMMIGRATION SERVICES
The University’s policy prohibits the use of outside immigration attorneys from filing any employment-based nonimmigrant or immigrant petitions. The following information is provided regarding appropriate use of attorneys to represent UIC, UIC departments, and/or their foreign faculty, staff, students or scholars.
Role of the Office of International Services (OIS):
The Office of International Services is responsible for serving the needs of international students, scholars, faculty and staff at UIC, as well as their sponsoring departments. OIS provides orientations, workshops and advising for our clients on topics including but not limited to the university, the United States, maintaining legal status, obtaining work permission, travel, and adjusting to life in a different culture. The office also provides consultation and workshops for sponsoring departments on hiring international faculty and staff, and the UIC policy for sponsorship of permanent residence. In addition, the office is charged with the processing of all applications/petitions that require “sponsorship” by UIC. These include: I-20s/DS-2019s and employment-based petitions requesting H-1B, E-3, TN, O-1, and permanent residency. The office is responsible for insuring that the University’s interests are accurately represented in all immigration-related applications to government agencies.
Role of the Department:
Departments who wish to sponsor nonimmigrant faculty, staff and scholars must work with OIS to complete necessary forms (most of which are available at the OIS website) in a timely fashion so that OIS can obtain the appropriate immigration documentation necessary for sponsoring the foreign individual. Departments should not sign any G-28 “Notice of Entry of Appearance as Attorney or Representative” form or United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) forms without consulting with OIS. Completion of OIS forms does not constitute signing immigration documents.
Role of Attorneys:
Attorneys MAY NOT represent UIC employees or their sponsoring departments in preparing or filing any of the following types of petitions:
- Labor Certification of any kind and Permanent Residence applications based on Labor Certification
- Permanent Residence applications for Outstanding Researchers/Professors
- H-1B petitions
- O-1 petitions
- TN petitions
- Other petitions or documents that involve University employment
Attorneys MAY represent UIC employees and students in preparing or filing the following cases:
- Waiver petitions of section 212(e) two year home residence requirement
- Permanent Residence applications based on National Interest
- Permanent Residence applications based on Extraordinary Ability
- Permanent Residence applications based on family
- Permanent Residence applications based on the Visa Diversity Lottery
All immigration related forms, applications and petitions which are required by law or regulation to be filed by or on behalf of the University of Illinois at Chicago must be prepared and filed by the Office of International Services.
Departments are, on occasion, asked by employees or their attorneys to sign forms or documents to support waivers of the 2-year home residence requirement and/or permanent residence petitions. Although J-1 Exchange Visitors may hire attorneys to help them obtain waivers, departments should not sign waiver applications. Permanent residence (commonly referred to as “Green Card”) applications based on UIC employment should be initiated by departments working with OIS to obtain approvals. Attorneys should not be involved in these cases.
Departments should not sign applications prepared by attorneys for permanent residence applications filed on the basis of:
- National Interest
- Extraordinary Ability
- Family Based
- Visa Diversity Lottery
These applications do not require UIC employment, and are considered “self” petitions. Signing documents for these types of petitions is strictly forbidden, as it could impose legal obligations on the university of which departments may be unaware.
Departments may not sign the following forms:
- G-28 Notice of Entry of Appearance as Attorney or Representative (a blue form)
- I-129 Petition for A Nonimmigrant Worker
- I-140 Immigrant Petition for Alien Worker
- PERM Application for Alien Employment Certification
- Other immigration related documents, petitions or forms which promise UIC employment
If you believe you have a case which merits special consideration, please bring it to the attention of the Director of the Office of International services who will be happy to discuss the specifics of that situation.