Visa & Immigration Services Administration
The Visa & Immigration Services Administration (VISA) office provides a wide array of services to departments and over 200 international employees and visiting scientists coming to Cedars-Sinai Medical Center (CSMC). VISA, a division of Academic Human Resources, is dedicated to providing comprehensive immigration advising services, programs and informational resources that facilitate the hiring of international employees in support of CSMC’s departments and research units mission as well as international scholars and their families in achieving their academic, professional and personal goals.
In addition to our oversight of the CSMC's immigration services, the VISA office also oversees I-9 compliance for the entire Medical Center.
Information on this site pertains only to employment or sponsorship by CSMC and is not intended to be nor should it be used as immigration legal advice. In addition, individual experiences may differ and procedures may vary as the information is subject to change at any time.
News and Announcements
CBP Stamps on DS-2019 and I-20 Forms Discontinued
"As of Aug. 10, 2012, U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) no longer provides admission stamps on Forms I-20/DS-2019 for prospective and returning international students and scholars (traveling with F, M, and J visas) seeking admission to the United States. This change makes CBP processes consistent with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service’s (USCIS) recent change to stop stamping Forms I-20/DS-2019. USCIS implemented this change as part of the launch of its online immigration benefits system, USCIS Electronic Immigration System, as it transforms the agency from a paper-based system to an online environment. ... Although placing an admission stamp on Forms I-20/DS-2019 has been a longstanding practice at CBP, it is not required. While the admission stamps on Forms I-20/DS-2019 are not indicators of lawful status or academic program duration, some state and federal benefit granting agencies have required international students and scholars to present stamped versions. State requirements vary. If a state benefit granting agency rejects an unstamped Form I-20/DS-2019, applicants may make an appointment with USCIS online through InfoPass and take their Form I-20/DS-2019 to their local USCIS office to be stamped. ( InfoPass ) This transitional step will end on Nov. 21, 2012. International students and scholars who encounter issues with their state or federal benefit applications should continue to contact the Immigration and Customs Enforcement Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP) at (703) 603-3400 or SEVP@dhs.gov. CBP, Aug. 27, 2012.
Fraud Detection and National Security (FDNS) Site Visits
What you should know…. Fraud Detection and National Security Site Visits
Reminder Regarding Travel Outside of the U.S.
Are you planning a trip outside of the U.S. during the upcoming holidays? Don't forget to notify our office prior to your travel to obtain the necessary travel validation documents and/or an updated employment verification letter.
- J-1 scholars and J-2 dependents need a valid signature on your DS-2019 form along with other supporting documents to re-enter the U.S.
- Other visa status holders (e.g. H-1B, H-4, E-3, O-1, etc.) must carry the original I-797 Approval Notice and an employment verification letter.
- If you need a travel signature or employment verification letter, please contact our office to schedule an appointment with your Immigration Partner at least 2 weeks prior to your trip abroad.
For more information about travel and reentry, please visit our international travel page. For more information about travel warnings from the U.S. Department of State, please click here. For more information about re-entry into the U.S., please click here
Visa Pilot Program - China Launch/Romania Added
As of February 13, 2012 the US Embassy and consulates in China will allow certain visa applicants in the B, C1, D, F, J, M, and O categories whose visas have expired less than four years ago (48 months) to renew their visas in the same classification without another interview. Specifically, J visa categories are eligible provided the applicant is renewing his/her visa to continue participation in the same program at the same institution as with the previous visa. Click here for more information
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