1. Free Legal Help, Legal Forms and Lawyers. TheLaw.com has been providing free legal assistance online since 1995. Our most popular destinations for legal help are below. It only takes a minute to join our legal community!

    Dismiss Notice

Preveiling Wage question H Visa

Discussion in 'Investment, Work Visa' started by Seattlebound, May 30, 2002.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. Seattlebound

    Seattlebound Law Topic Starter New Member

    Messages:
    3
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    I have a company in Seattle who I know well. They are willing to sponsor me for an H-1B work visa to move from the UK to the States so I can work for them.

    Unfortunately, it transpires that the offered salary fails the Preveiling Wage dictated for that kind of position.

    I am more than happy with the salary they have offered me, so I don't understand why my application should be declined just because someone else has decided that it's "not enough".

    Because I have a university degree, I'm classified as a "Level 2", which makes the minimum preveiling wage outside of my company's budget.

    I'm praying that someone out there knows a way to solve this dilemma? I don't want to sound desperate, but I really am, so what can I say?

    Is there any more information you need from me to answer this problem?

    Thank-you in advance.
     
  2. Michael Wechsler

    Michael Wechsler Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    9,173
    Likes Received:
    622
    Trophy Points:
    113

    My guess is that the "prevailing wage" means that it is an amount that is sufficient for you to live and support yourself independently. The INS does not want immigrants to be able to use a low salary as a mere "token" for sponsorship whereby the sponsored person is really using the "job" as a manner in which to extend their stay in the US rather than them having a real skill which is being sponsored. It does make some sense if you think about it and as far as I remember, the prevailing wage was actually quite low.

     
  3. Seattlebound

    Seattlebound Law Topic Starter New Member

    Messages:
    3
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Hi Michael,

    I appreciate your point of view, but it's more complex than that. For starters, my offer was US$40,000, which I would certainly not class as low.

    The problem was that for the position I was going for (you might call it "Technical / Marketing Manager"), the Level 2 Prevailing Wage was US$73,000. Bear in mind this was the *minimum* salary dictated by law, otherwise my visa application would be declined.

    We explored pretty much all the possible options (obviously there wasn't the budget to pay me the required $70k), and we've had to let it drop.

    So I'm staying here in the UK ;-(

    I guess the logic is that a local American doing that job should be (somehow) earning 70 grand so if I, as an "alien" worker did that job for any less, you could say I've deprived that American of a job.

    You'll forgive me if I don't swallow that too easily... ;)

    Thanks for your help though.

    Geoff
     
  4. Michael Wechsler

    Michael Wechsler Administrator Staff Member

    Messages:
    9,173
    Likes Received:
    622
    Trophy Points:
    113

    Wow... very interesting. I do know that wage levels that I have encountered were typically lower. As I don't deal directly with immigration law lately, I'm not sure how the significant downturn in the economy has affected the levels, if at all, and the difficulties in obtaining a work visa in the USA.
     
  5. Seattlebound

    Seattlebound Law Topic Starter New Member

    Messages:
    3
    Likes Received:
    0
    Trophy Points:
    0
    Well, the prevailing wage system is split into two levels:

    Level 1:

    "Beginning level employees who have a basic understanding of the occupation through education or experience. They perform routing or moderately complex tasks that require limited exercise of judgment and provide experience and familiarization with the employer's methods, practices, and programs. They may assist staff performing tasks requiring skills equivalent to a Level II and may perform higher-level work for training and developmental purposes. These employees work under close supervision and receive specific instructions or required tasks and results expected. Work is closely monitored and previewed for accuracy."

    and Level 2:

    "Fully competent employees who have sufficient experience in the occupation to plan and conduct work requiring judgment and the independent evaluation, selection, modification and application of standard procedures and techniques. Such employees use advanced skills and diversified knowledge to solve unusual and complex problems. They may supervise or provide direction to staff performing tasks requiring skills equivalent to a Level I. These employees receive only technical guidance and their work is reviewed for application of sound judgment and effectiveness in meeting the established procedures and expectations."

    Since I was applying for an H1-B professional visa, with a bachelor's degree as a minimum requirement, it is automatically assumed that I will therefore be a Level 2 worker (well, I'd say I was anyway), and therefore must be paid the minimum higher tier salary.

    This is calculated from the Online Wage Library:

    http://edc.dws.state.ut.us/owl.asp

    Salaries vary from state to state, so make sure you select the right one. I was to work in Seattle, so WA is my choice.

    To give you an idea, here were some of my results:

    11-2021 | Marketing managers

    Level 1: $56,597.00
    Level 2: $101,421.00

    27-3031 | Public relations specialists

    Level 1: $33,530.00
    Level 2: $71,864.00

    11-2031 | Public relations managers
    Level 1: $51,501.00
    Level 2: $93,246.00

    If I remind you that my original offer was (a quite acceptable) US$40,000, and you can see why the PW insistance that I receive a Level 2 salary prices me completely out of a job.

    As it turns out, I'll be staying in the UK, and we're chewing over plans to start up a UK sales office here instead.

    I'm now vaguely an amateur expert in UK -> US immigration law, so if anyone is stuck in a similar position as I was, and reads this, you can use the UBB system to email me directly. I'll try and help where I can.

    Geoff
     

Share This Page

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.