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Recently my company applied for my work visa and I see that my salary which they reported in "Labor condition Application for Nonimmigrant workers" to be more than what I actually get paid.

Upon confronting this to the HR and asking if it was simply a mistake, she said that that is what my salary will be if I get selected in the work visa lottery but if I don't I'll have to continue working on a lower one currently.

I know that I should feel good since I am getting a raise*, but I feel that this is highly unethical since I am getting a raise because of the law and not because of the skill sets that I possess! and the fact that I feel like being cheated.

What should I do?

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    So if you don't get selected for this lottery....what will your status be? Are they illegally hiring you, so they can justify paying a lower wage? just confused how that works. – Keith Apr 17 at 20:01
  • Are you currently working remotely? Or do you have some other work authorisation (presumably without such a requirement)? Is that authorisation temporary or permanent? Or are you working illegally? No matter which, I don't really see any goal for us to address here, apart from asking for a raise if you don't get the visa (and can continue working for them) and/or finding another job. – Dukeling Apr 17 at 20:19
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    What you’re describing is standard practice in a lot of places. With your current status, they’re allowed to pay you a lower salary than what will be required with your new visa. It would be the same as if a new law got passed that raised the minimum wage. Not sure why you think that’s unethical. – AffableAmbler Apr 17 at 20:30
  • No they are not illegally hiring me. Everything is legal. I'll be paid less that's it. – Seeker Apr 17 at 21:30
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Given the legal restrictions, timing and terminology around the LCA, I assume this is an H-1B temporary guest worker/dual intent visa to work in the US.

There are a few restrictions on this visa that are supposedly intended to ensure it is not used to hire foreign workers simply to save money over what a domestic worker would expect. In order to address this, two measures are in play.

1) A "prevailing wage" has been defined in the region where you'd work for the role you'd be placed in. Note, this number may not actually represent the current usual compensation, but you are supposed to be paid at least that amount.

2) Companies that are deemed to be "visa-dependent", that is rely heavily on guest workers over domestic workers, come under more scrutiny when applying for visas. If the salary is at least $60K, the visa is not factored into the calculation for being visa-dependent. This loophole, for example, allows companies like Infosys to staff heavily with guest workers without being closely monitored for doing so.

The stated salary for "with visa" or "without" is a matter of cost of working in the different locations and US policy attempts to protect domestic salaries. It's more a matter of policy and geography than any statement about you specifically.

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