It’s a slippery slope, the risks are many, and it’s not advised.  What are some considerations:

  • What’s the context?  Is this the same work for which you  plan to compensate the individual?  Are there others in the unit being compensated for the same work?
  • What happens if something goes wrong (e.g., an explosion in a lab or the person falls in the work place)? Is the University liable?
  • Might the US Department of Labor perceive the arrangement as a way of circumventing   regulations governing hiring practices? Does the arrangement displace a U.S. citizen looking for work?
  • Is the University depriving the “volunteer”  of compensation for work performed?
  • How do federal regulators define volunteer?  Will the volunteer receive any benefits with a financial value that may be deemed compensation?
  • How will the Department of Homeland Security view the arrangement?  If unfavorably, will it impact the individual’s future ability to gain employable status in the U.S. 
Resources:

Berkeley International Office
2299 Piedmont Avenue
Berkeley, CA 94720-2321
Tel: 510.642.2818
Fax: 510.643.7289
InternationalOffice@berkeley.edu