What is an E-3 visa?
The E-3 visa is exclusively for citizens of Australia and its criteria is similar to the H-1B visa and the H-1B1 visa.
E-3 visa criteria
To qualify for an E-3 visa, the application must demonstrate that they are performing services in a “specialty occupation.”
Specialty occupations under E-3 visas
A specialty occupation is one that requires a theoretical and practical application of a body of knowledge in a professional field. Further, the applicant must show that they have a minimum of a bachelor’s degree or its equivalent. The consulate officer will determine whether the job being offered qualifies as a “specialty occupation” by reviewing the applicant’s education and experience, and whether the degree is sufficient to perform the job duties.
E-3 visa validity period
The E-3 visa can be issued for up to two (2) years and renewable indefinitely. However, the E-3 does require the applicant to demonstrate an intent to depart the U.S. upon the expiration of the visa.
How to apply for an E-3 visa
There are two ways to apply for an E-3 visa. The Australian citizen applicant can apply for the actual visa at a U.S. consulate. If the applicant is currently in the U.S. in non-immigrant status, the U.S. employer can apply to change the applicant to E-3 status, or to extend the applicant’s E-3 status if they are currently working for another employer.
Premium Processing for E-3 visas
As of February 24, 2021, premium processing is available for employers submitting E-3 petitions with USCIS. This means that E-3 petitions can be adjudicated by USCIS within 15 business days of submission. The USCIS filing fee for premium processing is $2,500.
Employment authorization for dependent spouses of E-3 visa holders
Spouses of E-3 visa holders are entitled to apply for employment authorization. Children under 21 can also accompany their parents to the U.S.
Working part-time with an E-3 visa
There is no requirement that the employment be full-time. As such, E-3 visas may be approved for both full-time or part-time employment.
Multiple employers with an E-3 visa
Australian citizens may hold more than one E-3 visa if they have more than one job offer. For example, if an applicant has two part-time job offers from two different employers, they can apply for two separate E-3 visas.
E-3 visa annual cap
There is an annual cap of 10,500 visas allowed for E-3 visas issued to Australians.
Email us if you are an Australian citizen applying for or renewing an E-3 visa.