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View Full Version : Working From Home - New Angle, New issue


lunar
07-21-2010, 09:38 AM
Normally my wife is the one who is used to post or follow up on the latest here.

This came up a week ago. I have been working from home in a different state and we do not have any company office near my home. Nearest office location is about 3 hours. I had to move this far away due to personal reasons.

Now after working from home for 3 years (extending EAD, H1Bs etc) Fragomen (most of you know who they are) says I cannot do work from home anymore due to this conflict with uscis. it seems USCIS doesnt recognize your home as a Govt recognized work location. Hence I cannot work from home.

Now my manager wants me to only work from the office since folks reporting to me are also in that state. Now he is using Fragomen and HR emails as a reason for me to move back.

Anythoughts ? I am sure you all will agree that is the law. but why all this now ? even after working for 12 years.

One other point the fragomen lawyer said is - this is going to be the case for all thier clients.

sayantan76
07-21-2010, 09:51 AM
Normally my wife is the one who is used to post or follow up on the latest here.

This came up a week ago. I have been working from home in a different state and we do not have any company office near my home. Nearest office location is about 3 hours. I had to move this far away due to personal reasons.

Now after working from home for 3 years (extending EAD, H1Bs etc) Fragomen (most of you know who they are) says I cannot do work from home anymore due to this conflict with uscis. it seems USCIS doesnt recognize your home as a Govt recognized work location. Hence I cannot work from home.

Now my manager wants me to only work from the office since folks reporting to me are also in that state. Now he is using Fragomen and HR emails as a reason for me to move back.

Anythoughts ? I am sure you all will agree that is the law. but why all this now ? even after working for 12 years.

One other point the fragomen lawyer said is - this is going to be the case for all thier clients.
wow - thats a new one.......and really intriguing........one could argue that if a work can be done remotely - then why should the work be located in United States at all and hence - why the need for a visa? on the other hand - that would be totally counterproductive as companies would use the logic to outsource work outside the country and result in reduction in number of employees who pay US taxes.......

satyasaich
07-21-2010, 10:14 AM
When i was in a fortune 5 earlier in my career, Fragomen & Assc were my attorneys as well. Never had such thing in the past nor heard of it. By the way, thousands of people work from home in a company where i was also working from home till yesterday. ( today 7/21 i don't have a job due to EAD processing delays )
it's just their inability to explain the business model. For example, if you are in IBM, they have only few offices in midwest and most of the people work from home & travel to client site based on necessity. Some of the positions ( suchas DBA / Unix Admin/ Web Admin etc;)doesn't even require presence at client location not even once in an year.
That's how the business model is existing. just because some officers / clerks in USCIS doesn't understand / nor interpret properly the vebiage or context of law, it's their traning issue. worst case scenario, that's why we pay hefty amounts to so called 'immigration attorneys' to 'explain' the law & to work with USCIS officials to do the 'CORRECT' thing
Normally my wife is the one who is used to post or follow up on the latest here.

This came up a week ago. I have been working from home in a different state and we do not have any company office near my home. Nearest office location is about 3 hours. I had to move this far away due to personal reasons.

Now after working from home for 3 years (extending EAD, H1Bs etc) Fragomen (most of you know who they are) says I cannot do work from home anymore due to this conflict with uscis. it seems USCIS doesnt recognize your home as a Govt recognized work location. Hence I cannot work from home.

Now my manager wants me to only work from the office since folks reporting to me are also in that state. Now he is using Fragomen and HR emails as a reason for me to move back.

Anythoughts ? I am sure you all will agree that is the law. but why all this now ? even after working for 12 years.

One other point the fragomen lawyer said is - this is going to be the case for all thier clients.

gc28262
07-21-2010, 10:33 AM
IMO it looks like USCIS is trying to find some reason to deny an H1B petition. Fragomen doesn't have the guts to defend their clients before USCIS since they underwent some investigation.
They are just trying to play safe.

Nil
07-21-2010, 10:50 AM
Very Potent topic.
During the downturn, company decided to dissolve local satellite office and have everyone in the region work from home.
DOL audited labor application asking 'why home and work addresses are the same: is the candidate related to employer?'
Go figure.
Lawyer mentioned there is no provision on the labor app form to indicate 'home office'. Also, in this case, where to do the labor for - the region where the professional is living or the main office (opposite coasts in my case) is unclear.
If the residing city is tested for labor, which is rational, how do you ensure 'the ad must be displayed at the workplace'?
What if DOL denies application due to lack of clarity on such issues?

IV leadership pls comment as possible.....

Leo07
07-21-2010, 11:02 AM
Taking the emotional quotient and any other 'angles' out of the issue. Fragomen is correct and so is your manager.

If it comes to that, it's not worth the risk for you, your manager and your company to do anything other than what's suggested by your attorney.(Fragomen)

Normally my wife is the one who is used to post or follow up on the latest here.

This came up a week ago. I have been working from home in a different state and we do not have any company office near my home. Nearest office location is about 3 hours. I had to move this far away due to personal reasons.

Now after working from home for 3 years (extending EAD, H1Bs etc) Fragomen (most of you know who they are) says I cannot do work from home anymore due to this conflict with uscis. it seems USCIS doesnt recognize your home as a Govt recognized work location. Hence I cannot work from home.

Now my manager wants me to only work from the office since folks reporting to me are also in that state. Now he is using Fragomen and HR emails as a reason for me to move back.

Anythoughts ? I am sure you all will agree that is the law. but why all this now ? even after working for 12 years.

One other point the fragomen lawyer said is - this is going to be the case for all thier clients.

lunar
07-21-2010, 12:43 PM
I Agree it is better not to take risk. But why is this an issue after 3 years of working from home. Next question is If I ask my lawyer not to renew my H1B and only work on EAD does DOL have an issue ? is that risk worth taking. Moving my family entirely for this reason is not a good option.

anu_t
07-21-2010, 04:01 PM
Yes. while applying for my new labour My lawyer and my company told me "I can not work from home". I think due to the new restrictions and everything lawyers doesn't want to take any kind of risks any more. (Means that's what I interpreted.)

bkarnik
07-21-2010, 05:34 PM
I had a similar situation at my work place (attorney is Fragomen...what a coincicence). This was in response to recent stepped up H1B site inspections by USCIS. As a reult, Fragomen recommended that "working from home" or "teleworker" status is not allowed under H1B. So, no more working from home for me :(