If an employee requests to temporarily work remotely from another state during the COVID-19 pandemic to visit family/friends, providing the employee does not change their current home state of residence, this decision can be made by the employee’s supervisor in consultation with their local HR Rep. If the employee’s job requires the employee to return to physically working on campus while working temporarily from another state, the employee is expected to return at their own expense. Employees should consult the University’s COVID travel policy when returning from an out-of-state visit.
Moving Primary Residence
If an employee would like to move their primary residence to a different state, their manager should first determine if the position can be performed completely remotely. If so, HR should be consulted immediately (see Guidelines for Working Outside of New York State (pdf)). This will require an assessment to determine potential tax and other considerations to determine if the request is feasible and may create additional costs for the employee’s unit to cover, including legal fees. Employees are also encouraged to seek professional advice to understand implications the move may have on their personal tax obligations.
If it is determined that either the position cannot be performed completely remote and/or the tax and other assessments determine it is not feasible, the employee may be given the option to either continue working at their current location or develop an exit plan if they still plan to relocate.
Final approval and arrangements for remote work outside NYS are at the discretion of college/unit management, and are not grievable, per Policy 6.6.13.
If a final job candidate requests to work from another state, hiring managers should follow the same process as when an employee requests to move their primary residence to another state. The candidate should also be encouraged to seek professional advice to understand the implications that working from another state may have on their personal tax obligations.
Working From Another Country
Cornell is a U.S.-based employer and working remotely from a primary residence outside the United States is not permitted. Only for limited reasons (required on-site research, etc.) and for short durations does Cornell permit employees to work in another country. Global Cornell oversees such arrangements to assure compliance with the considerable legal, tax, and other employment-related obligations for both the individual employee and Cornell. If an employee changes work location, such change may also draw a need for different personal health care coverage, foreign worker’s compensation insurance, and other licensing and registrations.
With consideration to the extraordinary circumstances our international students, faculty, and academic staff are facing with the pandemic, Cornell has put together a framework of conditions that if met will allow an individual to temporarily continue an appointment from his or her home country. Currently, Cornell is only able to support the exception for appointments which are critical to meeting our academic and research missions and for those individuals who meet all the criteria as outlined in the following guidelines. Supervisors should contact their local HR departments to determine eligibility for any of their workers who are impacted by travel restrictions, government-mandated stay-at-home orders, and or other government-imposed orders related to COVID-19.
For related immigration questions, please contact International Services via email or by phone.
If you are planning Cornell-related international business travel, please refer to the current Cornell policies governing travel. Additional information can be found on the International Travel Guidelines, Policy, and Recommendations page. Emergency international travel or special considerations should be discussed with your local HR representative.
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