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Definition of “Work” & What Puts Foreign National Students & Scholars at Risk

Tuesday, January 21, 2020 12:00 PM to 1:30 PM
Boston Bar Association - 16 Beacon Street, Boston, MA


This session will explore the definition of “work” (or lack thereof) within immigration law and then look to employment law for better guidance.  Based on those legal concepts, the session will provide an overview of the various requirements for F-1 students and J-1 scholars to receive work authorization and the limitations for each.  Finally, the speakers will address several nontraditional work scenarios (start-ups, Uber, investment opportunities, gig performances) to analyze whether work authorization is required, as well as provide practice pointers on how foreign nationals can ensure they maintain their legal status and gather documentation now in preparation for questions by immigration authorities as to the validity of such work in the future.

Learning Objectives:

  • Participant will be able to identify the most common work situations which can lead students to unintentionally violate status and how to advise students to avoid these work arrangements.
  • In the world of start-ups, Uber, YouTube stars, Airbnb, definitions of work & income become muddy. We will review the definition of "work" per DOL/IRS/DHS regulations.
  • Participant will be able to advise students regarding the new DS-160 social media reporting requirements & how “upselling" themselves or listing certain activities might lead to RFEs or denials later.
  • Upon completion, participant will be able to advise students on what documents USCIS might request in the future RFEs related to work activities so they can prepare ahead of time.

Registration Categories:
BBA Member – Free. Included as part of your membership.
Non-Member - $100.00

Sponsoring Section/Committee(s):




Jenna Kim


BBA Event Calendar