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E-3 Visa Frequently Asked Questions

Below are some FAQ's containing essential information you need to know before applying for an E-3 visa:

Q: What is an E-3 visa and who can apply for it?

A: An E-3 visa is strictly for Australian citizens intending to work temporarily in the United States. Only Australian Citizens with a job offer in the United States working in a specialty occupation can apply.

Q: Why is it limited to Australians?

A: The US Congress passed legislation in May 2005 to create the new temporary visa class that signifies the special relationship between America and Australia. A maximum of 10,500 will be issued each year.

Q: What is a specialty occupation?

A specialty occupation, as defined by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service means;

Q: Do I need a license/professional registration for a specialty occupation?

A: If the job requires a license or registration to perform the specialty occupation then this must be obtained before and presented during the application process. In certain cases, where such a license or other official permission is not immediately required to perform the duties described in the visa application, the applicant must show that he or she will obtain all necessary licenses within a reasonable period of time following admission to the United States.

Q: What does my US-based employer need to do?

A: The United States-based employer of an E-3 applicant must obtain a Labor Condition Application (LCA) from the Department of Labor. Unlike most other temporary visas they do not need to submit a petition to the Department of Homeland Security.

The potential employer must also submit a job letter that establishes that the applicant will be engaged in qualifying work in a specialty occupation and be paid the actual or prevailing wage for that specialty occupation.

Q: How long is the E-3 visa valid for?

A: The visa is valid for 24 months but can be renewed for another 24 months on an indefinite basis so long as;

Extensions of an E-3 visa will not be counted against the annual E-3 visa cap.

Q: Can my spouse and children accompany me to the United States?

A: Yes. The spouse and children of an E-3 visa holder are also admitted and they need not be Australian citizens. Spouses and children do not count against the annual E-3 visa cap.

Q: Can my spouse also work whilst in the United States?

A: Yes. E-3 spouses are entitled to work in the United States and this may be in a position other than a specialty occupation. The spouse of an E-3 visa holder may apply to the Department of Homeland Security for an employment authorization document, which an employer could use to verify the spouse's employment eligibility.

Q: What if I change employers?

A: Your E-3 Visa is linked to an employer, so a change of employer would require a new E-3 visa application. This can be done whilst inside the United States and a new application does not count against the E-3 visa quota.

Q: I am interested in applying, how do I proceed?

A: If you are an Australian interested in working in America on an E-3 visa?  Fill in an enquiry form to see if you qualify.