This visa lets Australian professionals who have the skills and qualifications for a specialty occupation. To avail it, they must have Australia residency and be invited to work in the US. The cap on this type of visas remains at 10,500 per year. But it doesn’t apply to the dependents of the E-3s. That is one big reason it is better than obtaining an H1B visa – a lack of serious competition. Another is that the spouses of E-3 visa holders may legally work once in the country.
We use this blog post to look at the E-3 class in detail. In it, you’ll find how to get the visa and the benefits that come with it.
E-3 Visa Privileges
Aside from the two main advantages mentioned above, there are other privileges for E-3 visa holders. One of them is a lower fee to file for it. The H1B costs petitioners an extra $1250-$2000 – for the AWCIA and USCIS fee. The E-3 also offers unlimited chances of renewal unlike the H1B – latter has a fixed period of 6 years. Finally, Aussies may apply for the E-3 from wherever they are as long as they maintain Australian residency.
E-1 Visa Restrictions
Of course, you must be an Australian to get this visa. Moreover, showing an employer-employee relationship to get it is another issue. Things get very complicated when the applicant possesses substantial equity in the said company. If you fall in the latter group, you’d be better off with either an E-1 or E-2.
E-1 Visa Requirements
Besides the residency issue, there are more E3 Visa Requirements. One of them is that their potential employer will file an LCA before they can apply for the visa. That means waiting for 7-10 days. Additionally, the petitioner must be hired on the wage prevailing in the US state they will work in.
How Much Does It Cost?
The E3 Visa Cost will set you back $270. Other than that, you will pay $100 more when you’re issued the visa and as much for your spouse if they will come with you. The consular application fee is $131 per applicant/dependent. The EAD, if the spouse wants to work, will cost you $340. However, an E-3 still costs one fourth of what you’d pay for an H1B.
E-1 Visa Application Process
Your E3 Visa Application can reach the relevant authorities in either of these two ways:
How to Apply If You’re inside the US
You begin by filing Form I-129 at the USCIS. But that comes after your employer files for the LCA. Once they receive it and you submit your petition, the USCIS deliberates your case. A green light leads to the filing of Form I-797. Next, you can go to the US Consulate and receive your visa.
How to apply if you’re outside the US
Getting the E3 Work Visa in this way begins with Form DS-160 filing. You get the confirmation page before you must pay their fee. Save the evidence of fee payment and the confirmation page both. Apply for an interview date at the US Embassy. When they send you a visa appointment letter, keep that safe as well.
In the interview, you must have all those documents mentioned above. Besides those, you will require:
- An employment letter on the company’s letterhead with the job description for your post
- Copies of the LCA and your educational documents
- Passport plus a regulation photo
- An envelope addressed to you
- Proof that you aren’t in the US to settle, such as property deeds or leases
E-1 Visa Processing Time
Normally, the E3 Visa Process duration extends to 2-3 months after the LCA and I-129 filing is complete. However, those applying via the Embassy may experience a variation, depending on the agency’s load.
How Long is an E-1 Visa Valid For?
Your E3 Visa will follow the period stated on the LCA for validity. Moreover, you must renew it after 24 months regardless of the date on the LCA.
Can an E-1 Visa Holder Obtain an Extension?
Just as with the other two E type visa, you may renew your E-3 visa as many times as you like and indefinitely. With each renewal, though, you must prove that the extension has nothing to do with settling in the US. You’re only here to work.
What About Family Members?
An E3 Visa Spouse can accompany you when you leave for the US to work. For that, they must prove how the two of you are related. Usually, this is done by the submission of a marriage certificate. Should they choose to work, they’ll need an EAD.
Can an E-1 Visa Holder Obtain a Green Card?
The road from an E3 Visa to Green Card can be challenging. After all, you get this visa on the condition that you will return to Australia. A green card, on the other hand, makes it plain that you intend to stay in the US as a resident. Therefore, don’t apply for this type of visa if what you need is one with dual intent.
However, you may still find ways to obtain your green card. For one, you can switch to a dual intent visa like all the H category visas, including an H-1B. Once you have the latter, go ahead and start the process of green card application. The other way is to request family members who have permanent US residency. If they agree to petition, you can join them in the US.
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What is E3 Visa? When you contact LA’s best immigration lawyer, you find out that and much more. We’d recommend doing so sooner to increase your chances of successfully obtaining an E-3.