Complex H-1B RFEs are not new, and they are not going away.  When USCIS finds one issue with a petition it triggers a closer look to find more – even if there aren’t any there!  That is how too many petitioners end up with multi-issue RFEs.  The Nightmare RFE dredges up so many issues that it is virtually impossible to answer in time by its own guidelines.

How do we answer the Nightmare RFE with an over 90% success rate?  We don’t follow the guidelines.

We advise our clients to read through the RFE, then put it down and go back to the original H-1B requirements and USCIS approval trends.  Then, look at the case in question and determine what evidence and documentation can better strengthen each requirement area.

When it comes to the Nightmare, this is what the solution looks like:

  1. Education Issues.  Include a credential evaluation written uniquely to address the visa, the job, the beneficiary’s education, and USCIS approval trends.  This means showing that the beneficiary has the clear educational equivalency of a US bachelor’s degree or higher in the exact field of the H-1B job.  This often includes a progressive work experience conversion wherein a professor with the authority to grant college credit for work experience converts three years of the beneficiary’s progressive work experience in the field of the H-1B job into one year of college credit towards that major.
  2. Specialty Occupation Issues.  Provide the ad for the job and ads for the same job at similar companies that show a bachelor’s degree is a minimum requirement to be hired to the position.  Include evidence of past hiring practices within the company showing the required bachelor’s degree minimum for the H-1B position in question. Include a detailed breakdown of the duties and responsibilities of the job highlighting specific skills and knowledge applied learned specifically through completion of a degree program in the field of the H-1B job.  Finally, include an expert opinion letter written by a professional in the field of the H-1B job with at least 10 years of field experience based on the additional information provided.  This expert should have experience in leadership and authority positions within the field in which they made hiring decisions regarding the position in question and supporting positions.
  3. Employer-Employee Relationship Issues.  Show how the employer will be able to control the work of the employee even at third-party worksites.  In addition, provide a complete itinerary of the work the H-1B employee will perform for the duration of the H-1B visa. 
  4. Wage Level Issues.  Provide a detailed breakdown of the factors that went into determining the appropriate wage level.  This issue can also be addressed in the Specialty Occupation expert opinion letter.

The best way to prevent a complex RFE is to anticipate and prevent it.  Taking the extra steps to clearly show USCIS that the beneficiary, the employer, and the position meet H-1B eligibility requirements is always worth it even if it feels like an unnecessary amount of hand holding.  At CCI we work with Nightmare RFE cases every year.  We know how to answer them, and we know how to prevent them.

Let us review your case for free before you file.  Visit and we will respond in 4 hours or less.

Sheila Danzig

Sheila Danzig is the director of CCI  Sheila specializes in overturning RFEs and Denials for work visas.

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