Bringing in foreign workers offers the advantage of having a much wider talent pool from which to choose your candidates. Before you can hire someone hundreds of miles away from you, it’s important to first understand the immigration policies, particularly policies surrounding worker visas that are imposed in your country. Failure to do so can result in calamitous consequences that easily outweigh the cost benefits of hiring a foreign professional.
Verify Work Authorization
Even if you are not looking to hire foreign workers to your company, the U.S. government already considers you as a prospective employer of non-US-based workers. As a result, your business is required to enforce strict immigration policies. Since 1986, businesses have been mandated to verify the work authorization of their new employees at the time of employment and thereafter by keeping records to maintain compliance. Throughout the years, more immigration policies have been introduced to maintain fair and legal employment of foreign workers including the Immigration Reform and Control Act of 1996, which barred employers from discriminating against non-citizens who have proper work authorization.
Learn About Worker Visas
To be able to help your candidates get the work authorization they need, you’ll want to brush up on your knowledge regarding immigration law. The path to a permanent work-based green card in the United States typically starts with some temporary pass. Candidates who are approved are given the “Non-immigrant” status. A path that is commonly taken by foreign workers to get a green card is applying for F-1 or student status and then applying for a Specialty Occupation, coded as H-1B.
Ask Legal Assistance
Your business can get stuck in deep water if you attempt to hire foreign workers without the proper knowledge of the process and requirements involved. Hiring a legal adviser and representative can help you ensure you’re following the current laws.
Provide Some Assistance if Needed
If your prospective candidates do not have the proper work authorization, you may be able to assist them in obtaining it. Keep in mind, however, that there are no standard work authorization procedures established under immigration law. The policies and procedures for securing work authorization for non-US-based workers can be especially complex. Help in any way you can or point them to additional assistance like these resources for Los Angeles immigrants.
Worker visas and the immigration law in general can be difficult matters to address alone. Follow the tips above to ensure that you and your business are following current laws.
Author Bio: Emma Sturgis is a freelance writer living in Boston, MA. When not writing, she enjoys reading and indoor rock climbing. Find her on Google +