The pay facts in the US for H-1B visa holders revealed

H-1B higher wages

The findings of a recent study about the earnings of H-1B visa holders have brought to light new facts. It busts myths of this class of workers being underpaid in the US.

The new finding is that 4 out of 5 US employers who appoint H-1B visa holders pay 20% more wages to them than the average market salaries. The data to establish this was collected by the US Labor Department (DOL).

In the financial year 2019 the average wage offered to all foreigners seeking to work in USA with an H-1B visa was $100,461. The average prevailing wage determined for the same period for the same skill level was $83,619. This analysis was done by the Cato Institute.

The percentage of H-1B employers whose average wage offers were above their prevailing wage determination was 78% in 2019.

This contradicts the finding made by the Economy Policy Institute that 60% of H-1B workers are paid wages below the local median calculated for the job.

Investigating these contradictions would need an understanding of the 4 wage levels determined by the DOL on the basis of:

  • Experience
  • Responsibilities
  • Skill

The employing firms for these H-1B visa holders are bound to pay the current median wage or more for each role.

It’s found by the Cato Institute that almost all H-1B employers offer pays above the median wage determined for every individual skill level.

The DOL has found that 70% of employees at wage levels L1 and L2 were getting wages higher than the existing wage rate in the US for that skill level.

For such higher wage levels, the requests for H-1B visa has doubled since 2010.

This combined with the hiring of overseas workers by many tech companies over US citizens has given birth to another situation. This is reflected in President Trump’s recent clampdown on H-1B visa issuance. It led to application denials to as much as 30%.

But the strong message the scenario gives is that many companies in the US are clearly favoring skilled immigrants.

If you are looking to Study, Work, Visit, Invest or Migrate to the USA, talk to Y-Axis, the World’s No.1 Immigration & Visa Company.

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Anshul Singhal

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