USCIS has been illegally denying and issuing RFEs for H-1B visa petitions for jobs that actually do meet specialty occupation criteria.  Earlier this year, three federal judges overturned USCIS decisions to reject visas based on specialty occupation issues that were actually fabricated from their own “arbitrary and capricious” adjudication.

Here’s the issue:

To qualify as a specialty occupation and therefore meet H-1B eligibility requirements, the job must normally require a minimum of a US bachelor’s degree or higher or its foreign equivalent to be hired.  Instead of “normally” USCIS has been substituting the word “always” with no change in regulation or law in order to illegally deny visas and issue RFEs.

In the past few years, the prevalence of specialty occupation RFEs has skyrocketed, even for jobs that had never before run into issues.  This year, we are already seeing specialty occupation RFEs in spite of recent legal precedent decisions.  Here is how to answer them:

Include an expert opinion letter in your response.  This takes two steps.

1. Find the RIGHT expert.

The right expert is someone with at least a decade of experience WORKING in the field of the H-1B job, who has worked in a wide range of positions in the field and has extensive experience hiring employees to the position of the H-1B visa.  This expert has a complete understanding of the field and understands the skills and knowledge necessary to perform the job in question, what education is required as a minimum to have attained these skills needed to perform the job, and industry standards regarding educational requirements for hiring.

2. Provide this expert with as much information, evidence, and documentation as possible.

In order to write the expert opinion letter that you or your employee or client needs to get that visa approved, you will need to provide as much as you can regarding the employer, past hiring practices for the position, and the duties, responsibilities, and expectations for the position as possible.  This includes the ad for the job, specific skill requirements to perform the specific duties of the position, and so forth.  The more information you can provide the expert, the more detailed and specific opinion letter they can write.

At CCI, we have the RIGHT experts on hand in every field ready to write the opinion letter you need, or your employee or client needs to answer that H-1B specialty occupation RFE.  We are waiving our 72-hour rush delivery fee for all academic credential evaluations and expert opinion letters through the month of May to help you start work on time, or your employee or client start work on time regardless of USCIS delays due to the COVID-19 crisis.

For a free review of your case, visit  We will respond in 48 hours or less.

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