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Approved! The Feared Level 1 Wage RFE!

This year, CIS has come up with a creative new way to come down on computer programmers petitioning for H1B visa status: Level 1 Wages.

Here’s how they’re justifying this new RFE:

The US Department of Labor’s Occupational Outlook Handbook (OOH) is what CIS uses as a references to determine whether or not a job is specialized to meet H1B criteria.  For a job to meet these criteria, the candidate must hold a US bachelor’s degree or higher or its equivalentas a minimum requirement to perform the duties of the job.  When it comes to the job of computer programmer, the OOH states that some employers will hire computer programmers for entry level positions with only a US Associate’s degree.  CIS is using this as evidence that computer programmers making Level 1 Wages are entry level and therefore do not meet specialization requirements, as some employers only require an Associates, rather than a Bachelor’s degree to perform the duties of this job.

There are two main problems with this RFE:

1. Level 1 Wage does not mean entry level job.

Many jobs that require more education than an entry level job would – including computer programming – require a lot of supervision and training on the part of the employer.  Recent college graduates coming into the workforce with a Bachelor’s degree but little to no work experience need to be supervised and trained to apply the specialized skills and knowledge they learned in school to the work environment.  That’s why jobs that meet H1B education requirements can be met at Level 1 Wages: employers need to do extra work to help new hires make the transition from college into the work force.

2. The OOH also states most employers require a US Bachelor’s degree for entry level computer programmers.

That’s right, the same source that CIS uses to justify this RFE also states that the norm is for employers to meet H1B requirements for entry level computer programming positions anyway.  Although it does state that some employers will hire to this position with only a US Associate’s degree, it also states that in most cases a US Bachelor’s degree is required, even for jobs at entry level. 

We can use these problems with this RFE to help you or your employee or client gain ground in the RFE response to strengthen their case.  When it comes to this employment issue RFE, CIS is simply wrong.  However, CIS is still the gatekeeper to H1B visa status, and it’s up to us to overturn these RFEs and set the record straight.  This is not an easy task, but at TheDegreePeople.com we have a 90% success rate when answering these RFEs.

To have us review your case, or your employee or client’s case at no charge or obligation, please send the following documents to predocs@cci123.com/


• Beneficiary’s resume and educational documents

• Employer support letter

• A detailed job description outlining the duties of the position

• The RFE

We will get back to you in 48 hours or less with a full analysis and, if we can help you, details on pricing and directions on how to order.