Permanent Residence


Permanent residence obtained through Texas A&M is an employer driven process and is always initiated by the hiring department. Per System Regulation 33.99.09, only certain positions may be considered for sponsorship.
 
Positions eligible for sponsorship include:
• Tenure/tenure-track faculty
• Permanent positions [Staff positions may be considered for sponsorship under exceptional circumstances, when the system member determines it is their best interest for business continuity.]
 
Positions that are not considered for sponsorship are temporary positions such as:
• Postdoctoral researchers and scholars
• Lecturers
• Researchers with fixed term appointments or appointments ending with funding
• Exchange visitors
 
Departments interested in sponsoring an individual for permanent residence must submit the Employment Based Permanent Residence Request Form. This form must be signed by the Department Head and routed for approval to the Dean or Agency Director for approval. After those signatures are obtained, forward the form, along with the employee’s C.V., justification letter and copy(s) of any advertisement used, to ISFS at TAMU 1158.
 
If the documentation satisfies the requirements established by System Regulation 33.99.09 ISFS will obtain final approvals (by the Dean of Faculties and Provost for TAMU faculty) and make a recommendation to the department on which route to pursue permanent residence.
 
In the academic setting the most commonly used permanent residence categories are:
 
Special handling. This option may only be used for tenured or tenure-track faculty, or Senior Lecturers who teach classes leading to a terminal degree. It allows the department to utilize the competitive recruitment used to hire the faculty member as long as a Labor Certification is filed within 18 months of the date of the offer letter. This process should be initiated no later than one year after the date of hire. The System Regulation also allows the Department Head to request a waiver of the one-year in position rule and begin the process immediately upon hire.
 
Outstanding Professor/Researcher. The criterion adopted by the Texas A&M University System establishes two requirements for sponsorship under the Outstanding Professor or Researcher category. The employee must:
  1. Possess at least three years of post-degree teaching or research experience (except in exceptional cases lesser time than three years may be considered on a case-by-case basis, and
  2. Establish by a preponderance of evidence, outstanding international accomplishments that overall sets the foreign national apart in the academic community through eminence and distinction based on international recognition as an Outstanding Professor or Researcher.
 
Regular Alien Labor Certification. Employer must test the labor market to see that no American worker is ready, willing, qualified or available to fill the position. This is accomplished by launching a bona fide search, recruitment, and selection process. Regular labor certifications are typically used for critical staff positions or research positions.
 
Self-Petitioning
You may elect to pursue permanent residence on your own by filing a National Interest Waiver or Extraordinary Ability I-140. For these petitions, the Texas A&M employer may not be represented as the applicant or sponsor on the I-140. The only support the employer may provide you is a letter supporting your effort to acquire permanent residence. Additionally, ISFS may not offer any assistance on your self-petition effort.

The I-485
The final step toward permanent residence is the filing of the I-485 petition with USCIS. Because this petition is your personal petition, ISFS cannot give advice or assist in the preparation of the I-485.