Department of Labor Releases New Interim Final Rule Significantly Increasing Prevailing Wage Require

The U.S. Department of Labor (DOL) has released an advance copy of an interim final rule (IFR) which will significantly increase the prevailing wage rates that must be paid to H-1B, H-1B1 and E-3 temporary workers, as well the required wage rates for the PERM Labor Certification-based process. This update accompanies, but is distinct from, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS)'s interim final rule on the H-1B program, also released yesterday. In an unprecedented move, the DOL is providing no notice of this rule, which is expected to take effect immediately upon publication in the Federal Register. We anticipate this could happen as early as tomorrow, October 8th. The new rule will require a minimum prevailing wage rate as much as 60% higher than that required under current regulations. It is almost certain that this rule will be challenged in federal court, and will very likely be enjoined (i.e. blocked) in the coming weeks. We will provide more information on this important change in the coming days.

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