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Important announcement for department managers who have H-1B employees.

FLSA adjustments and sponsorship of H-1B Postdoctoral Fellows at Augusta University

Dear Department Administrators,
 
As you have perhaps heard by now, Research Administration and Human Resources announced a new salary range for AU postdoctoral fellows in response to last year's lowering of the FLSA threshold by the Department of Labor. The new range is: base $38,000, mid-point $47,500, and max $60,000. We believe the adjustments will not only allow greater flexibility to PIs and departments in hiring postdoctoral fellows, but are also in keeping with the economic realities of the CSRA labor market.
 
That being said, we want you to be aware that this change may cause some short-term disparity over the pay required for those in H-1B status versus all other postdoctoral fellows. Department of Labor regulations require that H-1B sponsored employees be employed at the higher of two figures: the prevailing wage, an amount determined by the Department of Labor for the CSRA area; and the actual wage, defined as the average paid to similarly-employed postdoctoral fellows within the hiring unit. Given the salary histories for postdoctoral fellows at AU over the past three years, sponsoring departments will find that both of these figures are likely to remain substantially above the new hiring minimum for several years.   
 
IPSO remains committed to providing you with the best service possible and will work with you to minimize this issue while remaining compliant with relevant regulations. As always, the earlier we are advised of pending issues, the more options are generally available for immigration sponsorship. One approach to minimizing the impact of this change would be paying careful attention to the regular promotion of experienced postdocs and appropriate selection of position titles for new and retained personnel. Appropriate use of the Senior Postdoctoral Fellow, Assistant Research Scientist and Research Associate positions will help to minimize inappropriately wide pay ranges that could cause problems for H-1B sponsorship of current and future postdoctoral fellows. Should departments have any questions regarding this issue, they are welcome to contact Jonathan Harwood, Sr. Coordinator of International Services.
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