Wherever you are in the world, you might be thinking about what’s on the other side. You might also be asking if the “grass is greener” and if opportunities abound there. Most likely, the answer will be yes. For example, if you’re from Australia and you’re one of those who want to move to the US for work, then you have to get an E3 visa.
So What’s an E3 visa? First off, Visas are authorizations granted by a government of a place or country that allows entry to any foreigner wanting to get inside that country. There are four types of visas, depending on the purpose: Student visas, tourist visas, Immigration and naturalization, and Business visas.
Visas can also be very specific. Right now, we’re going to talk about the E3 visa. The US government created E3 visas only for Australian citizens. These visas are work or business visas that allow a professional from Australia to work in a relevant field in the US. Here are some more things you need to know about E3 visas and how to get one:
Am I Qualified?
The first thing you should ask before getting an E3 is, “Am I Qualified?” Here are some key points with regards to E3 eligibility:
- Australian Resident holding a valid Australian Passport
- Possess a University Degree
- Have a job offer or a sponsor in a specialty occupation in the US
If you don’t meet these requirements, you might not be eligible for an E3 visa. If you’re doubtful about your qualifications, you can enlist the aid of E3 visa specialists to know more.
Do note that E3 visas can apply to the spouse and children of the applicant(more on this later). The principal applicant, however, should prove that their stay in the US is temporary. In addition, the work that they should also be in should also be considered a specialty occupation.
For those in the US who want to sponsor an Australian citizen, here’s what you need to do:
- Employee’s wages and benefits should be on a US payroll.
- These wages should be at or above the prevailing wage(depending on employment location and specialty).
- Have an LCA or a Labor Condition Application with the US Department of Labor or DOL. LCAs give proof if the salary matches the conditions given.
I’m Qualified, So How Do I Apply for an E3?
So you’re qualified and thinking of applying for an E3. The first thing you should do is to gather your documents. The documents for an E3 visa are as follows:
- Valid Australian Passport
- Copies of the formal job offer from your employer in the US. These should be specific in describing your job or role in your employer’s company.
- Copy of the LCA
- Printed DS-160 with your photo and barcode
- Envelope with your legal address
- Papers and other documents about your degree and qualifications
- Other supporting documents*
Once you have all the documents, you can go to the US consulate in Australia. You will be then asked to pay a $270 processing fee. Make sure to keep all your receipts with you. After confirmation, you will be required to select a date for your interview. Once the interview date is up and you finish without any problems, the processing of your application will now start.
*Supporting documents should prove that you are on a temporary stay in the US. For example, land titles, paperwork for ownership, or anything of that nature are suitable proof that you don’t want to leave your life entirely behind in Australia.
More Facts about the E3 visa You Should Know about:
- Application processing time generally takes 4-6 months or even longer.
- Once approved, an E3 visa is valid for 24 months or two years. You need to renew your visa if you intend to stay longer.
- E3 visas can be renewed indefinitely, given that there’s a real need for renewal.
- Your spouse and children who aren’t married and under the age of 21 can be considered as your dependents. This means that they can enter the US with you.
- Your children can go to school in the US.
- Your spouse can also work in the US, given that he or she has applied for an EAD or an Employment Authorization Document.
If you’re ready to take another step in your professional career and want to test the waters in the US, the E3 visa is for you. Above are some tips and the qualifications you need to apply for an E3.