International and Postdoctoral Services Office newsletter for H-1B employees. 
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H-1B IPSO Updates
March 2020

IPSO open for business, taking precautionary measures due to COVID-19

The ISPO office remains open for business, but as a result of precautionary measures concerning COVID-19, all in-person meetings are being significantly reduced. Rest assured that we are on the job full-time and coming to the office when necessary. Our phones are being monitored and voicemails are being retrieved severals times a day. 
Whenever possible we will communicate with you via email or phone and use your Box folder for document exchange. Should original documents be required, we will arrange for you to either drop off or pick up the documents in our office at specific times.

Premium processing for all H-1B cases temporarily suspended

On Friday, March 20, USCIS announced that the premium processing of H-1B petitions was temporarily suspended. 

We will be reviewing all H-1B extensions and change of status requests and moving forward on all petition filings as soon as possible. Your cooperation in completing all requests that we make for forms, documents and checks is of the utmost importance. 

As you know, in some cases, premium processing was essential to the timely adjudication of the H-1B. With your cooperation and the cooperation of your sponsoring department, we hope that all cases will be adjudicated in time for you to maintain your employment eligibility. 

Changes to H-1B employment must be vetted by IPSO

Sponsoring departments, supervisors and H-1B employees are all responsible for updating the H-1B status of sponsored personnel as required by federal regulations. H-1B sponsorship is specific to job title, location and salary.  Any change to these conditions may require an amendment of H-1B sponsorship, with corresponding costs.
Sponsored employees' H-1B status is only valid for the conditions as reported to the government. Unreported changes can result in loss of status for the sponsored employee, fines for the university and a loss of the privilege for H-1B sponsorship for the university. 

To request a change in H-1B employment, your department manager should submit a H-1B Change of Duties Form no later than six weeks prior to the requested change.

Protect your personal information!

IPSO has gone to great lengths in our efforts to protect our clients' personal information. We have greatly expanded our use of the BOX folder system and enhanced our security practices regarding email communication. Towards that end, IPSO reminds our clients to refrain from sharing personal information through email, either in text or by attachment.
Please make sure any immigration documentation is uploaded to your BOX folder and not sent via email. 

Towards the end of the year, IPSO will be unveiling a new case management system, Sunapsis, which will further strengthen the security of your information.

Yes, you should participate in the Census 2020

"The Census is a questionnaire that asks about the number of people living in the United States. Knowing the number of people in a city, county, or the whole state allows for the planning of day-to-day operations, the future, and even emergencies."
Georgia Census 2020
You may have received a document in the mail asking you to participate in the Census 2020 and wondered if you — as an H-1B employee — should participate. The answer is yes. The Census 2020 is for everyone. See the FAQs about counting the foreign-born population on the Census 2020 website.

For more information, you may also visit Georgia's Census 2020 website or the national Census 2020 website
Copyright © 2020 Augusta University IPSO, All rights reserved.

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