new h1b visa wage level comparison level 1

You should know by now about the New H1B Visa Wage Level Rule that will go into effect on Oct 8, 2020.

I’m sure you want to know how much you have to be paid as per the new wage level?

Is it $100,000 or $60,000?

There are four wage levels – Level 1, 2, 3, and 4.

Old Wage levels are based on 17th, 34th, 50th, and 67th percentiles of total salary distribution for a specific job at a specific location.

Current Wage Level used for H1B Visa and PERM Labor applications were set 20 years back. It uses the 4 Quartile method.

“The Department acknowledges that the existing wage levels – set at approximately the 17th, 34th, 50th, and 67th percentiles – have been in place for over 20 years, and that many employers likely have longstanding practices of paying their foreign workers at the rates produced by the current levels.”

  1. Level 1 – 17th Percentile
  2. Level 2 – 34th Percentile
  3. Level 3 – 50th Percentile
  4. Level 4 – 67th Percentile

So, what’s changing?

What is the New-Wage Level Required for H1B Visa?

“Adjusting the levels to the 45th, 62nd, 78th, and 95th percentiles represents a significant change, and may result in some employers modifying their use of the H1B and PERM programs.”

As per the new rule, the Wage Level Percentile is increased.

  1. Level 1 – 17 to 45th Percentile
  2. Level 2 – 34 to 62th Percentile
  3. Level 3 – 50 to 78th Percentile
  4. Level 4 – 67 to 95th Percentile

So, how much do you need to get paid to get H1B Visa approval now?

I happened to have an old screenshot for Wage Levels for SOC Code 15-1121.00 Computer Systems Analyst from 2016 – 2017.

Now, New Wage Level have bene updated at FLC Data Center based on the New Wage Level rule.


Old vs New Wage Level for H1B visa Wage Level Comparison Computer Analyst


The above data is for Computer Systems Analyst located in San Jose, California.

That’s a huge jump!

If you are in the process of filing your H1B Visa extension, transfer or cap-exempt H1B Visa and if your Salary should follow within the specified new wage level.

Question – Do you think an employer in the San Jose, California paying $76,000 for a Computer Systems Analyst filing an H1B Visa extension next week will increase the salary to $117,416?

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I have given one example. you can use the following steps to find your new wages.

How to Find Your New H1B Visa Salary?

Use the following steps to find the New-Wage Level (approximate)

  • Go to FLC Data Center
  • Find the Location and Job title
  • Look for Wages Level

Summary: New H1B Visa Wage Rule

  • Employers need to pay more to meet the new minimum wage level
  • New Wage Levels apply to H1B transfers, Extensions as well
  • Pending Applications (LCA already filed or approved) are not impacted
  • New H1B visa wage levels Effective from Oct 9, 2020
  • Lawsuits may be filed for such a drastic wage level change without any advanced notice to employers

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  1. Lakshmi on October 18, 2020 at 12:58 AM

    I checked the wage level in my recent LCA (issued on – 10/15) and it says Dietrich Fall Survey 2019 and doesn’t say any Wage level. Can you please let me know if this is related to wage level. Also, please let me know if the Dietrich Fall Survey wage levels also changed

    • Raghuram Sukumar on October 18, 2020 at 2:31 PM

      Attorneys can use the Private Wage Level. Not sure if USCIS will accept it.

      • Lakshmi on October 18, 2020 at 6:59 PM

        Thank you Raghuram. Does the new rule apply only if the Prevailing wage source is OES? Or does it apply even if the Prevailing Wage Source is Other source

        • Raghuram Sukumar on October 19, 2020 at 10:56 AM

          I think Attorney’s can choose to use Private Wage DB, but USCIS can decide to accept or deny that.

  2. H12023 on October 15, 2020 at 8:22 PM

    So the Speciality occupation rule goes into effect from December. I have an approved H1B COS where my degree is Non- software but my current job is in the software industry. I am planning to go for stamping in March/April 2021. Will this new rule also make the visa interview process more stringent/ difficult ?

    • Raghuram Sukumar on October 17, 2020 at 8:08 AM

      Listen to the webinar I did with Attorney Murali yesterday. It’s on F1 Visa Facebook Group.

  3. Saahi on October 15, 2020 at 4:04 PM

    I recently got an offer from a company. The offer is slightly less than Level-2 wage. I told the HR that there has been an increment in wage levels on FLC and my current experience falls under Level-2. She said that they use private prevailing wage data source and FLC OES has no impact on us. So I’m guessing not all employers use FLC OES wages for filing, some use private PW as well for filing LCA.

  4. Saahi on October 15, 2020 at 3:51 PM

    To my knowledge, this impacts candidates whose employer files their LCA under OES PW(Prevailing Wage), but there are employers who use private PW surveys for whom this has no impact. You can check your employer’s LCA filings at

  5. Manish on October 12, 2020 at 3:29 AM

    What will be the impact for 3 sceneries as below:
    H1B COS in effect on Oct 1, 2020 and started with PERM process.
    1. prevailing wage determination is completed before Oct 8.
    2. Prevailing wage determination request is submitted before 8 Oct but still pending.
    3. Prevailing wage determination request is yet to submit.

    • Raghuram Sukumar on October 12, 2020 at 11:07 AM

      IF PWR is pending, new wage rule will apply.
      If PWR is approved by Oct 8th then old rules.

  6. Meeravali Shaik on October 10, 2020 at 9:48 PM

    My PWD request was submitted on Aug. Will the processing times of PWD requests extend because of this new rule ?

    • Raghuram Sukumar on October 12, 2020 at 11:11 AM

      Processing time hovers around 3 to 4 months. But, pending PWR = New Rule will apply.

  7. Akash on October 9, 2020 at 6:38 PM

    My H1B was approved and started from 10/1/2020. I have another offer from employer B and they filed my LCA for wage level-1, it was approved on 2nd Oct. We will file H1B petition on 16th Oct. Will my application be impacted? Please tell me ASAP.

  8. Mou sumi on October 9, 2020 at 2:26 AM

    Hi if someone applies for prevailing wage determination in June 2020 , still not approved! That case will be affected by the new rule?

  9. H1B Victim on October 8, 2020 at 11:35 PM

    Why FLC site not showing wages for 15-1132 or 15-1133 SOC Codes ? any Idea ? Thanks.

  10. Vidya on October 8, 2020 at 10:13 PM

    Is there a chance this may get blocked? Any status on current lawsuits against this ?

  11. Pravin on October 8, 2020 at 9:50 PM

    My current wage level (with old standard) is at level 3 but with new standard it will be at wage level 1. My job description (experience and education) falls into level 2. So when my LCA has to be done for next extension .. I guess my salary needs to be greater than new wage level 2, correct?

    Just having salary greater than minimum required (new wage level 1) is not enough but it has to be in line with your job level as well correct?

    • Raghuram Sukumar on October 9, 2020 at 8:28 AM

      If your LCA is already approved, then I think you should be able to apply for an extension using the old LCA. Consider yourself lucky or if you think you could have received pay raise?

  12. mukesh on October 8, 2020 at 9:25 PM

    Is this effective october 8 ? I see in federal register they are effective from 12/07/2020 ??

    Can you please clarify

    • Raghuram Sukumar on October 9, 2020 at 8:30 AM

      Two rules were announced – One for Speciality Occupation/H1B and the second one was for Wage Level Increase.

      Wage Level Rule is Effective Immediately. Another rule is effective 60 days from publication, which will be in December.

      • Rohit Venkat Gandhi on October 10, 2020 at 2:02 AM

        Some sources are saying its effective 60 days from now and some say from October 8th. Could you please specifically show where it was mentioned to be October 8th on the federal registry website?

        • Raghuram Sukumar on October 10, 2020 at 9:29 AM

          Two rules have been introduced.
          1. Wage Rule – Effective immediately
          2. Speciality Occupation Rule – Effective in 60 days.

  13. Shubham on October 8, 2020 at 8:36 PM

    What is my PWD for GC was filled in July and is in pending as of now. Will I get the PWD based on new rules or the old wage level as it is already filed

    • Shubham on October 8, 2020 at 8:36 PM

      *What if

      • Raghuram Sukumar on October 9, 2020 at 4:49 PM

        I was listening to an attorney and I heard that they may give you a higher wage for the position.

    • M Raju on October 9, 2020 at 3:02 PM

      Following this post, since I have the same question

  14. Suyash Nande on October 8, 2020 at 6:06 PM

    Does it apply to new PERM/i-140 filing?

    • Raghuram Sukumar on October 9, 2020 at 8:30 AM

      I think this new PWER will impact both H1B and PERM.

  15. AB on October 8, 2020 at 5:29 PM

    My H1 was recently approved under consular processing. I am currently on Stem OPT. I was planning to convert the visa from consular to COS. With these changes should I still go for it?

    • Raghuram Sukumar on October 9, 2020 at 8:31 AM

      LCA = Approved or Submitted or Filed before effective Date is good to go.

  16. Sunny B on October 8, 2020 at 3:29 PM

    Does this apply to cap exempt H1b (post docs) as well?

    • Raghuram Sukumar on October 9, 2020 at 8:31 AM

      Yes. It applies to Cap-Exempt H1B’s as well.

  17. Jas on October 8, 2020 at 2:58 PM

    Is the applicable for the employer filing PERM and then i140 ?

    Current H1B is valid till 2022 but company is going to file PERM . Will that require new salary ? Pls advise

  18. Ivan on October 8, 2020 at 12:52 PM

    ‘Pending Applications are not impacted’
    Does the above point apply to pending LCAs or pending H1B? What if I’ve certified LCA before October 8th and H1B filed on Oct 10th?

    • Raghuram Sukumar on October 9, 2020 at 8:31 AM

      LCA’s pending or approved before the effective date seem to be ok.

  19. Priyanshi on October 8, 2020 at 12:38 PM

    Is this rule applicable for people with H1B applications that are still pending approval as of October 8 2020?

  20. SD on October 8, 2020 at 10:32 AM

    Company was about to file my extension next week. I am sure this rule is going to get challenged in court. When can it be challenged in court, during first 60 days or only after 60 days?
    And I have around 4 months left, do you think I should wait to file an extension or is it okay to give it a try?

    • Raghuram Sukumar on October 9, 2020 at 8:33 AM

      Your scenario is one that I was concerned about. If your Wage level for LCA is higher than your current wage, then your employer either should give you a salary increase before applying for H1B.
      Court Challenge – It can be done anytime (that’s what I think).

  21. sushi on October 7, 2020 at 11:08 AM

    Is this applicable to fulltime employees as well? One of my friend said that this is for only Contract employees. Can you please confirm?

    • Raghuram Sukumar on October 8, 2020 at 10:25 AM

      This applies to everyone on H1B – Transfers, Extensions, New applications.

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