H1B Wage Level RFEs: How to Prove the Prevailing Wage


Last year, we saw a spike in Level 1 Wages RFEs for H1B beneficiaries, particularly for computer programmers. However, wage level RFEs can happen at any wage level, and they do.

H1B requirements state that the beneficiary must be paid the prevailing wages for the position in that industry, for companies of that size, in that geographical region. Last year, while Level 1 Wages dominated the wage level RFE sector, we saw RFEs regarding wage levels 2, 3 and 4 as well.

If you receive, or if your employee or client receives a wage level RFE this season, you will need to provide evidence that clearly shows the H1B requirement in question is met.

How can you do this?

Since CIS issued an RFE, the evidence provided was clearly not enough. In your RFE response, you will need to include an expert opinion letter explaining why the wage level set for the job is appropriate for this particular position.

You will also need additional documentation that shows this is the prevailing wage for companies of this size in the geographic area, so be prepared with statistics, ads for the position in similar companies in your area that includes the wage level, and the section on the job in the US Department of Labor's Occupational Outlook Handbook should back up the evidence you provide.

The expert opinion letter also must clear up any inconsistencies that might occur between the beneficiary's job and pay grade, and job descriptions and pay grades in the OOH, statistics, and other evidence regarding wage levels. Some positions require higher levels of supervision than is normal for the industry, and others require the employee to work more independently and with more authority and responsibility than is the industry standard. Many factors go into determining wage levels for any given position, and in responding to the RFE, you need to do some CIS hand-holding to explain them all. This is where you need expert authority.

At TheDegreePeople we work with experts to make sure you get, or your employee or client gets the expert opinion letter they need to prove the proper wage level to CIS. For a free review of your case, or your employee or client's case, visit ccifree.com/?CodeLWA/.

About The Author

Sheila Danzig is the Executive Director of CCI, TheDegreePeople.com, a foreign credentials evaluation agency. For a free analysis of any difficult case, RFE, Denial, or NOID, please go to http://www.ccifree.com/?CodeLWA/ or call 800.771.4723.

The opinions expressed in this article do not necessarily reflect the opinion of ILW.COM.