H1B Wage Levels Rule can impact 275K H1B Jobs? PW Distributions FY 2017-20

On September 16th, US Department of Labor submitted a H1B rule that has title “Restructuring of H-1B/H-1B1/E-3 and PERM Wage Levels”. It was submitted to Office of Management and Budget to be reviewed and the rule stage is now set as Interim Final rule. 

While there are no details available at the moment for public to review the planned rule text, there are some hints given by the administration in the past in late June that they will look at changing the wage levels requirements for H1B LCA. The rumor is that the H1B LCA wage levels would be set to Level 3 or above to be qualified for H1B position.  This is just a rumor at the moment, but it may very well happen because Trump has been saying a lot about Merit based Immigration and to have the best and brightest. 

Analysis of H1B Wage Levels for FY 2017 – FY 2020

As we have over 10 years of H1B Visa LCA data at disposal, we thought of running some reports for everyone’s benefit. Whenever an LCA is filed for H1B with DOL, they need to indicate the wage level on LCA. You can find LCA details using our  H1B LCA Search 

 We have taken all the H1B visa LCAs filed in a fiscal year and grouped them by the wage level that was selected for a position. It gives us a distribution of H1B Prevailing Wage Levels for every year.  There are some cases, where the data is not properly selected and in such cases, you would see ‘N/A’ in the distribution. 

H1B Prevailing wage Level Distribution from FY 2017 to FY 2020 

Below are the H1B LCAs Wage Level Distribution charts for each of the fiscal years. The charts also show the total count of H1B LCAs filed in that year in that wage level. 

What can we infer from H1B Wage Levels Distribution ?

If you see the above charts, we can infer many interesting insights. 

  • Prevailing Wage Level I : It is interesting to see that Level 1 filings have reduced from 35.8% to 14.1%. This is due to the factor of Computer Programmer Level 1 wage RFEs. 
  • Prevailing Wage Level II : If we look at Level 2 wage filings, they have gone up from 28.9% in FY 2017 to 47.4% in FY 2020. This is a clear sign that companies are hiring more than entry level positions in recent years. 
  • Prevailing Wage Level III : Now, if we got to Level 3 wage filings, they were barely 10% in FY 2017 and now in FY 2020 they are close to 20%. Essentially they are doubled. So, more Wage Level 3 filings are done in recent years. It means more senior roles are hired on H1B. These positions will remain even if the rumor becomes true. 
  • Prevailing Wage Level IV : For Wage Level 4 as well, we had barely 5.7% in FY 2017 and now in FY 2020 it is about 12.5%, which is also more than double. This clearly tells that more senior people are hired on H1Bs. These roles are also there to remain even if the rumor is true. 

New Rule can Impact 275K H1B Holders 

If the proposed H1B rule goes in effect as the rumors are said, then the impacted H1B holders are going to be for Level 1 and Level 2, which is about 275,000 H1B holders ( added Level 1 and Level 2 job LCA count for FY 2020).  The impact is going to be really big, so we need to see if business will take it as they change.  They would go to courts, if it is not justified by businesses. 

What are your views on the change to H1B rule Wage Levels ? What are the reports you want to see on H1B Data ? 

Check the New H1B Rule at Reginfo.gov

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