Guest Blog by Eric Lyons
Being the most sought-after visa to enter the United States of America, an H1B visa is difficult to get. Applicants for H1B jobs in USA (beneficiaries of H1B visa petitions) can either be living in the USA or outside the USA at the time of filing of the petition.
Even though H1B visa petitioners and prospective visa holders have a slight knowledge of RFE, most of the time they cannot decode the reason why they got one. In this blog post, we have tried to cover the essential information related to H1B RFE, including its meaning, probable reasons, and response practices. Continue reading to get answers to all your questions.
What is RFE?
RFE stands for ‘Request for Evidence’, a request made by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), against the H1B visa petitions. The objective behind issuing an RFE is to seek additional evidence in the form of explanatory answers and documents before adjudicating an H1B visa petition.
How do you get notified?
Once the H1B petition filed by your current employer, prospective employer, or staffing consultant in the USA gets picked up in the lottery, you will get a USCIS case/receipt number. You need to ask your sponsor to share this number with you. With the help of the USCIS case/receipt number, you can check the status of your petition online.
Why do you get an H1B RFE?
Though an RFE for the H1B petition can be received because of any reason, the following are some typical reasons that are observed in the majority of the cases.
- A discrepancy in Information between Application and VIBE
The VIBE, which stands for ‘Validation Instrument for Business Enterprises’ is a web-based tool used by the USCIS for verifying the details mentioned about the H1B employer in the application. If the details don’t match, you are likely to receive an H1B RFE.
- Relationship between an Employer and an Employee
The relationship between a current/prospective employer and a current/prospective employee plays a strong role in the approval of H1B visa. For the application to be considered legitimate, it has to be proved that an employer-employee relationship exists between the employing organization itself. Supervision is done for this.
If the job has to be performed offsite, you need to explain the reason and follow the necessary rules.
- Inconsistency between the Prescribed and Offered Wage Rate
The government has prescribed a wage for employees at different levels, giving priority to citizens.
The employees at level 1 are entry level employees, whereas the employees at level 4 are fully competent. H1B jobs in USA are provided to job seekers in specialty occupations. So, they should be given the wages or remuneration as.
If the wages offered to you as mentioned in the H1B visa petition filed on your behalf does not match the level 4 wages, you will receive a request for evidence. Explaining the reason behind the inconsistency between the wages might be difficult for you and your employer.
What should you do on receiving an H1B RFE? You should coordinate with your employer to respond to the H1B RFE. If an H1B RFE is issued to you despite taking all the precautions, you must submit the response carefully as you will not get a second chance.
Eric Lyons is a PR strategist and writer at OPTnation, with extensive professional management experience in both public and private sectors.