The Office of International Services (OIS) provides assistance for all international scholars at the Homewood campus to obtain and maintain their appropriate visa status during their stay at the University. The OIS website also contains the information necessary to guide administrators through the process of hiring new international scholars (see Hiring Process for University Departments).
The following checklist is designed to help identify what steps must be taken to invite an international scholar to JHU and to ensure that the university remains in compliance with federal regulations governing the visitor.
- Determine the appropriate visa status for the appointee (typically J-1 or H-1B); contact OISSS if you are unsure which is appropriate
- Require the appointee to visit the OISSS upon arrival for check-in
- Remind the international appointee to obtain an official Social Security Number, if they do not already have one
- Check to be sure the international appointee completes the appropriate payroll forms and tax withholding forms (Form I-9, etc.)
- Verify the international visitor’s health insurance while the visitor is present in the U.S. (they are required to have health insurance)
- Be aware of your appointees’ visa expiration dates and visa extension requirements, making sure he/she completes visa status extension document in a timely manner
- Remind the international appointee to communicate any changes in address, phone number, or e-mail to international office on campus
- Contact OISSS when the appointee terminates with the Johns Hopkins University and/or depart U.S.
- Contact the OISSS with any questions or concerns regarding the international appointee.
In the case of international visitors, work eligibility supercedes all other criteria for the period of appointment. Therefore, appointments for international scholars will coincide with work eligibility rather than the academic or fiscal calendar. We ask departments not to complete an ISR transaction to place these individuals on payroll until they have officially arrived at the university and have completed an I-9 verification with the KSAS Human Resources Office. The Director of OISSS has requested that his staff not provide temporary (dummy) social security numbers or anything else that would assist departments in circumventing the payroll and compromising JHU’s federal grants by placing individuals on payroll before they enter the United States.
Dates of appointment requested in the Chair’s letter should coincide with eligibility to work. If an individual does not arrive at the university until after the start date of the appointment letter, then the first date of employment is the date of entry into the U.S. with JHU visa papers. The I-9, and not the appointment letter, dictates the first date of employment. Appointments cannot be made retroactive.
Penalties for Non-compliance
If Johns Hopkins University is found to be in non-compliance with U.S. federal regulations governing international visitors, the university is subject to the following penalties:
- Inability to admit international visitors in F-1 or J-1 Status
- Substantial fines ranging from civil penalties to the revocation of all federal grants and contracts.
Payments to International Students and Scholars
Several issues arise when paying international students or scholars at the University. The payment must be consistent with their visa type and their status as stipulated on the immigration documents.
For basic documentation information about employment authorization and payroll requirements for international persons for wages and fellowships, see http://www.controller.jhu.edu/tax/intlguide.html#8.
For payments, including honorarium, see
Forms for obtaining VISA Status
The most common visa types for appointed personnel are the J-1 and H-1B visas.
If your appointee is on entering the country on a J-1 visa, you must complete the Faculty Exchange Visitor Notification form (FS-2 FORM).
If your appointee is on entering the country on an H-1B visa, the Department is responsible for providing OISSS with the information required in the H-1B Departmental Checklist. The H1-B applicant must submit to the hiring department the documentation requested in the H-1B Individual Checklist.
Please note: All forms are downloadable through the OISSS website and require an original authorization signature. The Dean’s Office will send out an official appointment confirmation letter.
Upon arrival, the new appointee will need to complete an I-9 Employment Eligibility Form.
Payroll Notes for International Appointees:
- Need accurate work location (work physical address)
- Accuracy of citizenship- and visa-related fields in the hiring ISR is crucial for determining appropriate taxation and substantive presence test dates:
- Work (Authorization) Expiration Date
- Visa Type
- Original U.S. entry date
- Use IRS country codes for “citizenship” (find codes by clicking on the pop-up menu in the ISR field)