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International & Out-of-State Employment & Contracting

If you are considering an international hire or placement, please contact Dustin Green, Human Resources Consultant, at (520) 626-0829 or to discuss possible employment and tax implications. In addition to Human Resources guidance, guidance from the Office of General Counsel will be necessary.

Out-of-State Employment Risks

The Division of Human Resources provides the following guidance in regard to the employment of University of Arizona employees outside of Arizona. It is understood that there are circumstances in which employment outside of Arizona may be necessary, however, such employment relationships result in increased risks to the University.  Departments should be aware that, in many other states, there are both additional obligations and prohibitions on the actions employers may take. These may cover the areas of recruitment, credit and criminal background checks, record keeping, minimum wage, calculation and payment of overtime wages, parental leave, sick leave, workplace accessibility, mandatory training, discrimination claims, termination, and others.

 In light of this, it may be necessary for a department or college to retain the services of legal counsel when employing individuals outside of Arizona. This may be particularly advisable given that the employing department or college will be responsible for the costs, obligations, and any liability related to employment relationships outside of Arizona. Human Resources advises departments considering employment outside of Arizona to avoid such employment relationships when it is possible for the body of work in question to be conducted by an employee in Arizona.

Things to consider before placing or hiring an individual outside of the United States:

  • There will be additional costs associated with employing or contracting with an individual internationally. Outside legal counsel specializing in the foreign country's employment laws will be required.
  • Every situation is unique depending on the citizenship of the individual and the country where the individual will be working.
  • Generally speaking, if the employee will work in a foreign country for longer than six months, employment by the University may not be possible. Occasionally, however, depending on the circumstances, the University may be able to utilize a third-party employer or enter into an independent contractor relationship with the individual.
  • The process for placing an individual internationally can take a month or longer. Work cannot be performed until the individual is under contract.

To determine the best course of action, a department seeking an international hire or placement should be prepared to share the following information:

  • Will the individual be providing services as part of a larger agreement or Memorandum of Understanding?
  • What will be the duration of the services? Has the individual worked as an employee of the University during the 12 months prior to the anticipated start date of the international assignment?
  • Will all services be provided outside of the United States? If so, in what country?
  • What is the individual's country of nationality?
  • Will the individual teach a course from which students will receive credit toward a degree?
  • Will the University of Arizona provide course materials and tools?
  • Will the department provide specific instructions regarding the performance of the required work or will it rely on the individual's expertise?
  • Will the individual perform research under the supervision of a University of Arizona professor or employee?
  • Will the individual serve in an advisory or consulting capacity with a University of Arizona professor or employee?