It’s RFE Season!
If you receive an RFE, respond to it as soon as possible. Once you respond and CIS receives the answer, you may have to wait to find out whether or not your H1B petition was approved. You don’t have to be one of those people left in limbo. Respond ASAP and get the clock ticking.
RFEs have been on the rise for many years now, with around 25% of all H1B petitions receiving one. CIS education trends have grown much more strict, and if your bachelor’s degree is from the United States, or is in a field that is not an exact match for your H1B job, you must submit your transcripts with a credential evaluation. For degrees outside of the United States, this evaluation clearly spells out the value of your education in terms of US academic standards to write an equivalency to the degree you need for your H1B visa. This particular visa requires those who qualify to hold a US bachelor’s degree or its equivalent or higher. If your degree is in the wrong field – even if it is in a field related to your job – CIS is now issuing RFEs. In the past, you could skate on through with an approval with a degree in a related field, but since there are so many visas to sort through CIS has tightened its requirements. Now you must have a degree specialization that is an exact match for your job. If this is not the case, you need to have your degree evaluated for the academic value equivalency of the specialization you need. In both of these cases, progressive work experience – that shows you learned new specialized skills and knowledge through your work experience – can be combined to account for the missing academic content in the field required.
If you fall into one of these two academic categories and you did not submit a credential evaluation with your petition, you are likely staring down an education RFE. Don’t panic, it’s not too late. You made it into the lottery and your petition is still under consideration. Don’t waste time. Talk to a credential evaluation agency that specializes in RFEs and difficult cases. Get the credential evaluation and supporting documentation you need to answer your RFE and get your H1B visa approved.
What to look for in the right credential evaluation agency for your case:
- Easy to communicate with. They should answer when you call, respond to your texts and emails, and answer your questions with confidence.
- Follows CIS approval trends. The person you want writing your evaluation knows what CIS is looking for. CIS trends change, and an evaluation that worked last year may not work again this year. As in any job, the best professionals are the ones who keep on learning and changing with the industry.
- Works with RFEs and Difficult Cases regularly. You got an RFE. You want to work with someone who works with people in your situation and consistently achieves the outcome for others that you want for yourself.
Don’t let RFE season get you down. You are not alone in this, and there are plenty of helpful professionals who are happy to consult with you on your case. Good luck!!
About the Author
Sheila Danzig is the Executive Director at TheDegreePeople.com, a Foreign Credentials Evaluation Agency. For a free analysis of any difficult case, RFE, Denial, or NOID, please go to http://ccifree.com/ or call 800.771.4723.