How Does Immigration Status of An Employee Affect The Company

Evolution is an inevitable part of human life. One can’t move forward unless he participates in it in any manner and hence progresses as an individual as well. Evolution is a part of literally every aspect of life. In this day and age, we are witnessing the most advanced evolution of all times, the one technological in nature. But we often fail to notice that evolution is not synonymous to only progress. Just like many other things, even the problems an individual faces have evolved over the ages. Same is the case with workplace problems as well. As we keep progressing as a human race, even the nature of our problems changes according to the current scenario. For instance, the kind of problems the HR faced in the office around two decades ago is extremely different from those that erupt these days. Taking this into consideration, it is essential to keep up with the times even in terms of crucial situations.

Immigration Status of An Employee Affect The Company

In the race to be the best, companies are ready to go to any extent to ensure maximum productivity. In order to make this happen, the workforce plays a significant role. However updated the technology might be or good the raw materials are, all these are insufficient as long as the employees are efficient enough. For this, companies are readily hiring people from any corner of the world as long as they assure high work productivity. To lure such candidates to move to the city where your office is situated, the company needs to not only offer an impressive pay scale but also appealing perks along with offer to do all the paperwork for the individual. It seems like a cakewalk but is a tedious task when actually done.

Why is the employee’s immigration status the company’s responsibility?

A majority of candidates make it clear in the interview itself that the company is responsible for any kind of paperwork that needs to take place in terms of immigration. This is also a practical way to do it as the offer letter of the company makes it way easier for the candidate to attain the visa instead of a regular approach. There are certain companies which refuse to take the responsibilities of the immigration paperwork. Due to this, there have been instances where these companies have missed out on efficient employees just because they didn’t want to get involved in this tedious task. This opened the eyes of other organizations and they realized that if they want the best of the workforce, they need to make sure that the immigration status of an employee doesn’t affect the organization. Also, this clause is now included in the employee’s contract as well.

When the company takes up the responsibility of the employee’s immigration process, it does not just end by giving the offer letter. That is when the process actually begins. The immigration criteria differ from country to country. Therefore when an organization decides to hire a foreigner as its employee, he has to first look into the rules of its own country and how compatible is the immigration office to grant visa to the employee belonging to that particular nationality. Whether we like it or not on a personal level, one needs to take into consideration all these factors to make the immigration process smoother. There are times when the company also needs to give a valid reason behind why do they need that particular candidate in their company and not anyone else from the same country.

Employee’s immigration status

The best way to avoid any kind of misconceptions in the near future is to consult an immigration agent beforehand. The HR of the particular company must go through all the various clauses of the immigration policy of the country where the company resides. This is because even in one country, the policy is different according to the requirement of the candidate applying for the visa. Now a company has various types of employees. It may house an intern, a person who works on a contract basis, a trainee, as well as a permanent employee. The criterion for immigration application for all these employees is absolutely different. This is why it is necessary for the company to be well aware about the immigration policies so that they can draft the contract accordingly. The immigration clause on the contract can be altered according to the kind of employee you are planning to hire.

What if your employee’s visa expires?

When a candidate is joining your company, you are well prepared that the immigration formalities will follow. On the safer side, you also keep a cushion of a few weeks before the candidate’s joining date so that the formalities are done with by then. As this procedure is expected, it can’t be termed as a problem per say. A problem is when it suddenly pops up out of nowhere when you least expect it. In this case, it can be an issue wherein the employee’s visa has expired or has been annulled.

This case can erupt only in with a permanent employee. Interns or employees on a contract basis don’t need a long term visa and hence they move out once their work is done. But if an employee is a permanent one and the company wishes to retain him in the long run, then such visa issues can be a menace to the organization. Usually the organization makes it a point to make a request for the visa approval of the individual well in advance. At times, a faux pas like this can take place. This can serve as a cause of major stress to not only the employee but also the organization he is working for.

When such a situation takes place, the organization is in jeopardy to make sure that a solution is found on an urgent basis. People usually think that why does the company need to worry; it’s the employee who is losing the job and a source of income. It does not work this way. Losing an employee is a major loss for the company as well. Take into consideration the time the company has invested in hiring the individual. Adding to this, there is more effort and time put it to bring in an employee from another country. The company might have also invested money for the same. Also, training a new employee all over again is such a tedious task. When an employee has to suddenly move out, he also leaves a number of tasks midway. Therefore a ruckus can happen in the case of such a situation.

Even though the immigration process is a personal task, it is the responsibility of the organization if the person is visiting that country for official purposes. This is why to be on the safer side and to avoid any kind of confusion in the future, make things extremely clear in the contract of the employee itself. In case of a sudden annulment of the visa, it is wiser to claim that the company will take no responsibility for it. Instead the employee will have to pay a hefty fine for the same. This will promote them to be careful throughout their stay which will be beneficial for the country as well. 

Priyansha Mistry
Currently editor at The HR Digest Magazine. She helps HR professionals identify issues with their talent management and employment law. | Priyansha tweets at @PriyanshaMistry

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