Digging Deeper:

1990s F-1 labor and wage attestation pilot program



From 1990 through 1996, employers who hired F-1 students to work in off-campus jobs were required to file an attestation on Form ETA-9034 with the U.S. Department of Labor (USDOL) to prohibit U.S. worker displacement.111 Employers had to attest that they had “recruited for at least 60 days for the position(s) and that a sufficient number of U.S. workers were not able, qualified, and available for the position(s).”112 Moreover, employers had to attest that they would pay the F-1 student(s) and other similarly employed worker(s) the “required wage rate.”113 The required wage was the higher of the actual “establishment wage rate for the occupation” or the prevailing wage rate in the geographic area of intended employment.114 USDOL’s Wage and Hour Division had enforcement authority over the attestation provisions but it is unknown whether these provisions were ever actually enforced.115  The attestation pilot program ended on September 30, 1996.116 In 2002, references to the pilot program were finally removed from the F-1 program regulations.117 Apparently, neither Congress nor DHS have made any serious effort to re-start a similar labor and wage attestation for F-1 off-campus employment.

  • 111. See generally, 29 C.F.R. § 508.1; 20 C.F.R. Part 655, subparts J and K.
  • 112. 20 C.F.R. § 655.940(d).
  • 113. 20 C.F.R. § 655.940(e).
  • 114. 20 C.F.R. § 655.920.
  • 115. 20 C.F.R. § 655.1000.
  • 116. 20 C.F.R. §§ 655.900(d), 655.910(e).
  • 117. 67 Fed. Reg. 76256, 76264 (Dec. 11, 2002) (“Finally, this final rule makes conforming amendments . . . to remove the reference to filing a wage and labor attestation for off-campus employment. As indicated in the proposed rule, the requirement for a wage and labor attestation was part of a pilot program that has sunset.”).