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Updated November 21, 2023

General Timing

The process of sponsoring an individual for permanent residence can be very lengthy, taking two years or longer in many cases. Employees and managers should understand that the sponsorship process involves complex steps involving the US federal government, and extended waiting periods are common.

For those employees on time-limited visas such as the H-1B visa, the International Center will work with the employee, the department, and the immigration attorney in charge of the case to explore options for maintaining temporary employment authorization while the sponsorship process is underway. We recommend starting an sponsorship process with at least 2-3 years of remaining H-1B eligibility time in order to minimize the potential for disruption to employment.

Assessment and Selection of Eligibility Category

When a sponsorship request is approved for a Tufts employee, the International Center will send it to an immigration attorney to initiate process.

The attorney will first assess whether to pursue permanent residence under the EB-1B Outstanding Professor / Researcher Category or the EB-2A Advanced Degree category. In general, the International Center recommends utilizing the EB-1B where there is a strong likelihood for success; however, in the event the EB-1B is not recommended or strongly supported, the EB-2A category will be selected instead.

  • The EB-1B category requires the employee to provide evidence of international recognition and acclaim for outstanding achievement in a particular area.
  • The EB-2A category requires the employer to obtain a permanent labor certification from the Department of Labor and to show that it has offered full-time permanent employment for a position that requires an advanced degree.

Once a category is selected, the attorney will initiate the steps needed for the selected category.