What is required of employers laying off foreign workers? – TechCrunch


Here’s another edition of “Dear Sophie,” the advice column that answers immigration-related questions about working at technology companies.

“Your questions are vital to the spread of knowledge that allows people all over the world to rise above borders and pursue their dreams,” says Sophie Alcorn, a Silicon Valley immigration attorney. “Whether you’re in people ops, a founder or seeking a job in Silicon Valley, I would love to answer your questions in my next column.”

“Dear Sophie” columns are accessible for Extra Crunch subscribers; use promo code ALCORN to purchase a one or two-year subscription for 50% off.


Dear Sophie:

Fallout from COVID-19 is forcing our startup to downsize. What legal requirements do we need to consider if we’re laying off foreign-born employees or scaling back their hours?

— HR Manager in San Mateo

Dear HR Manager:

Thank you for your question; a lot of people are going through the same thing. Keep in mind that terminating an employee that your company sponsored for a visa or green card can have ramifications for future hiring.