How to Answer a Double H-1B RFE For Education and Specialty Occupation


RFE season is now, and when CIS finds one problem with a petition, they tend to find more. Over the past few years, we have seen a common double RFE involving specialty occupation and education issues.

H-1B eligibility rules state that to qualify for H-1B status the H-1B employee must hold a US Bachelor’s degree or higher or its equivalent in the exact field of the H-1B job. The job must be a specialty occupation, one that requires a minimum of the H-1B educational requirements for entry into the position. This job must involve theoretical and practical application of a specialized body of skills and knowledge as evidenced by the advanced degree.

This double RFE calls into question whether the job meets specialty occupation requirements, and whether the H-1B beneficiary meets educational requirements.

Some common issues on the job topic are when an occupation sometimes requires this advanced degree minimum qualification, or when the job is set at a low wage level.

Some common issues on the topic of the beneficiary’s education are incomplete college, a degree earned outside of the United States – particularly the Indian three-year Bachelor’s degree, no college or a degree from an unaccredited institution, and having the right degree but in the wrong specialization.

The first issue can be addressed with evidence showing past hiring practices, the ad for the job and similar jobs that show the minimum requirements meet H-1B specialty occupation requirements, a detailed breakdown of the duties of the job, and an expert opinion letter. This expert opinion letter validates that the job does require specialized knowledge and skill earned through the education required by H-1B statutes, and the expert must have expansive experience working in the field of the specialization, beyond instructing.

The second issue can be addressed with the right credential evaluation that takes the job and the education into consideration, along with H-1B requirements, CIS approval trends, and any training that took place in a classroom setting or through progressive work experience in the field to fill in any gaps between the beneficiary’s education and H-1B job requirements.

About The Author

At, we have experts on hand in all fields ready to write the expert opinion letter CIS needs to get the RFE overturned. All of our experts have extensive work experience in the field. All of our credential evaluators have been trained to work with difficult RFEs and have expertise in international education and particular visa requirements. Every credential evaluation is uniquely researched.

Sheila Danzig is an experienced foreign credential evaluator whose focus on dynamic response to USCIS trends has put her at the cutting edge of evaluation today. As Executive Director of Career Consulting International (CCI), Florida, since 2002, she has worked closely with immigration attorneys to assist with highly demanding credential-related matters, including Referrals for Evidence, Denials and Administrative Appeals Office proceedings. CCI has become known for its expert advocacy in many thousands of immigration cases, evolving new techniques and strategies to respond to the constantly-changing interpretations of USCIS and drawing on its own specialist research into international credentials and their equivalencies. Dr Danzig was educated at Hunter College, NY (BA), the Institute of Transpersonal Psychology (MA) and the Universidad Empresarial de Costa Rica (EdD). At TheDegreePeople we have experts on hand to write opinion letters that cover both wage level and specialty occupation issues in the same document. We also have experienced credential evaluators at your service who work regularly with difficult RFEs and their solutions. Every year, it is essential to cover all your bases before you file. This year, it is critical. Let us review your case, or your employee or client’s case for free to make sure any potential approval issues are fully anticipated and addressed in the initial petition. Visit and we will get back to you in 48 hours or less.