Trump Minimum Wage For H-1B Visa Holders Could Reach $250,000 A Year

Published: 05/22/2020


The Trump administration is considering a proposal to require companies to pay foreign-born scientists and engineers in H-1B status a minimum wage of $150,000 to $250,000 or more a year, depending on the job title and location. Several sources have confirmed that individuals most opposed to immigration in the administration view the coronavirus pandemic – and a 30-day review of temporary visas contained in the April 22, 2020, presidential proclamation – as their best chance to prevent the vast majority of high-skilled foreign nationals from being allowed to work in America.

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The H-1B restriction under discussion is to prevent, at minimum, the entry of H-1B visa holders who are not paid at the highest wage level – Level 4 – under the U.S. government’s prevailing wage criteria. Employers already consider the federal government’s system not to reflect market wages, and are concerned it will prevent them from employing the tech talent needed to work on digital transformations for U.S. companies and assist in the country’s economic recovery. 

Table 1: New York Level 4 Wages For H-1B Visa Holders

Type of OccupationAnnual Salary Required For Level 4
Financial Manager$254,405
Marketing Manager$227,406
Software Developer (Systems)$144,976

Source: Foreign Labor Certification Data Center Online Wage Library. Annual Salary for New York-Newark-Jersey City. Get the data Created with Datawrapper


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