Permanent Residence | LSU International Services

Permanent Resident Status through Employment with LSU


An LSU department intending to retain an employee on a permanent basis may sponsor the employee for permanent resident status. Permanent resident status, or the green card, authorizes an employee to live and work permanently in the United States. LSU policy on sponsorship of employees for permanent residency is contained in PM-26.

The employee must have a job offer or occupy a position that is full-time and permanent in nature. A permanent position is one that has guaranteed long-term funding and is not presently intended by the employer to have some specific end date in the future. The employer and the employee must have the expectation that the employee will continue in the employment for an indefinite or unlimited duration.

  • Full-time tenured and tenure-track faculty are eligible for sponsorship, and the International Services office (IS) coordinates the processing of their permanent residence paperwork as soon as the sponsoring department is ready to start the process.
  • All other employees must be employed by LSU for at least one year and receive favorable performance appraisal before they can be considered for permanent residence sponsorship. Furthermore, most of these employees may be sponsored only as recommended by IS and approved by the chancellor on a case-by-case basis.
  • Employees holding temporary or term positions such as instructors, lecturers, visiting professors, visiting researchers, and post-doctoral fellows are generally not eligible for permanent residence sponsorship.
  • Employees in grant-funded positions will generally not be eligible for sponsorship, unless the sponsoring department provides evidence that funding for the position is available for a minimum of three years into the future and demonstrates intent to continue to seek funding and a reasonable expectation that funding will continue.

Please see the sections below for further information on permanent residency. 

The permanent residence process is lengthy and complex. The application process may take a year or two to complete, depending on the particular circumstances of the case. Therefore, proper timing is very important. The department and the employee are responsible for providing IS with all information and documentation required for preparation of the permanent residence case. Failure to respond in a timely fashion or to provide specific information as requested may jeopardize the case and may result in IS’s inability to proceed with the case.

Departments and employees may not use outside counsel for preparation of LSU-sponsored cases without first consulting with IS. IS reserves the right to recommend that the employee retain an immigration attorney for complex cases. In such cases, IS retains the right to approve and sign immigration applications and forms before they are submitted by the attorney to the U.S. Department of Labor or the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service. Pursuant to PM-26, LSU employees are not authorized to sign form G-28, which would allow an attorney to represent LSU. The applicant employee may engage counsel to represent the employee's own interests but not LSU's legal interests.

All application and filing fees for permanent residency are the responsibility of the employee. Legal fees to outside counsel or attorneys are also the responsibility of the employee, except in specific cases where the law requires the employer to pay the legal fee. Recruitment expenses are the responsibility of the sponsoring department. IS does not charge any fees for processing permanent residence petitions on behalf of the sponsoring department and the employee.

A department that wishes to sponsor an employee for permanent residency must contact the International Services office to discuss eligibility requirements. If the employee qualifies for LSU sponsorship, the IS will explain the permanent residence options available for the employee and the procedures to be followed in obtaining permanent residence status.

The following permanent residence categories are typically used at LSU:

  • Special Handling labor certification for tenure-track faculty.
  • Regular Labor Certification, for non-teaching professional research positions, technical positions, and other eligible non-teaching positions.
  • Outstanding Professors or Researchers for faculty and researchers who are outstanding in their field and internationally recognized as such.

Obtaining permanent residency through Labor Certification involves three steps:

  1. LSU submits a Labor Certification application to the US Department of Labor (DOL). Prior to submitting the application, a labor certification case that meets Department of Labor standards must be prepared carefully. For teaching positions, this involves compiling paperwork that establish that a competitive recruitment process took place and that the employee who is being sponsored for permanent residence was found to be more qualified than all U.S. workers (U.S. citizens and permanent residents) who applied for the position. The application must be received by the Department of Labor no later than 18 months from the date of the job offer. For non-teaching positions, the process involves conducting a recruitment process that meets rigorous DOL standards. The department must demonstrate that they engaged in various recruitment efforts required by the DOL and could not find a U.S. worker (U.S. citizen or permanent resident) who was minimally qualified, able, and willing to perform the work at wages that meet or exceed the Prevailing Wage paid for the occupation in the area of intended employment.
  2. LSU submits an Immigrant Petition to the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS), confirming its willingness to sponsor the employee for permanent residence and demonstrating how that employee meets the job requirements.
  3. The employee files an Adjustment of Status application asking USCIS for change of status to permanent residency.

To obtain permanent residency through the Outstanding Professor/Researcher category, individuals must have at least three years of teaching and/or research experience and must meet immigration criteria to qualify as outstanding and internationally recognized in their particular academic field. The university files an immigrant petition directly with USCIS; upon approval, the employee files an application for Adjustment of Status.



Additional Information

The International Services office will discuss in detail the requirements and procedures for processing and filing labor certifications and immigrant petitions with eligible employees and their departments. For more information on how to become a permanent resident based on employment, visit the USCIS web site.

Permanent Residence Processing FAQs

Sponsorship Process Flowchart

Tenure-track Positions

Staff & Non-Tenure track Positions

Labor Certification Process Flowchart

Teaching Positions

Non-Teaching Positions

LSU Employee Information


Guidelines for Outstanding Professor or Researcher Petitions