E-3 (Visa for Professionals from Australia)

In 2005, a new work visa category was established specifically for citizens of Australia. The E-3 visa permits professionals to work in the U.S. for a specific employer sponsor. The E-3 visa is similar to an H-1B visa in that the worker must be coming to work in a specialty occupation position. A specialty occupation ordinarily requires the attainment of a bachelors degree or its equivalent, as a minimum for entry into the occupation.

Like the H-1B visa, a sponsoring employer must first submit a Labor Condition Application to the Department of Labor. Once this is approved, the Australian citizen can apply for the E-3 visa directly at the U.S. Consulate. Employers do not need to submit petitions to the USCIS.

The annual cap for E-3 visas is 10,500. Like other E visa types (E-1, E-2), the period of admission can be up to two years, and renewed indefinitely as long as the employment situation remains the same.

E-3 spouses can obtain E-3 visas. An E-3 spouse can obtain employment authorization