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

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Sheila Danzig


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.

At TheDegreePeople.com, 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.

If you or your employee or client receives an RFE this summer, time is of the essence.  Visit ccifree.com/ for a free review of your case and advisement of how to best proceed.


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