Applicants must hold the minimum relevant degree requirement for the occupation in which they will be employed. Experience cannot be substituted for an academic degree. E3 status is only valid for professional positions which require a Bachelors degree.
The initial maximum period of E3 authorization is for up to two years. The period of an extension is also for up to two years. Like the H-1B, the individual is eligible to continue working for the same employer up to 240 days while a filed extension is pending. Unlike the H-1B, there is no statutory limit to the time an individual may hold E3 status. Also, as with the H-1B, an individual may hold E3 status for concurrent employers and may change employers under the same status.
Please note that E3 status holders are not eligible to maintain E3 status once they have applied for adjustment of status to permanent resident. E3 professionals are generally permitted to study, as long as the study remains incidental to the E3 employment.
The E-3 visa classification currently applies only to nationals of Australia as well as their spouses and children. E-3 principal applicants must be going to the United States solely to work in a specialty occupation. The application is made at any U.S. Embassy or Consulate which processes non-immigrant petition-based visas, but you cannot apply from within the U.S. If applying from outside Australia, please contact the U.S. Consulate or Embassy where you plan to apply to check that they accept applications from non-residents, and for details of how to book an interview and current processing times, as these will vary from post to post. Some posts outside of Australia are not as familiar with the E3 visa and may be unfamiliar with adjudication of such visas. They are also unfamiliar with Australian education institutions, and so proving eligibility may be more difficult.
Submit a job offer letter from the prospective United States-based employer. The position offered must meet the definition of a specialty occupation must meet the general academic and occupational requirements for the position pursuant to Immigration and Nationality Act (INA) 214(i)(1).
In addition to the Electronic Visa Application Form DS-160, completed online (http://ceac.state.gov/genniv/) , print out the confirmation bar code page and take it to the interview along with the following documentary evidence:
The Labor Condition Application or Form ETA 9035, noted for E3- Australia. This is the notification of an approved Labor Condition Application (LCA) that the U.S. employer obtains from the Department of Labor. You cannot book an interview appointment until you have received this form from KUMC.
Evidence of academic or other qualifying credentials as required under Immigration and Nationality Act, and a job offer letter or other documentation from the employer establishing that upon entry into the United States the applicant will be engaged in qualifying work in a specialty occupation and that the alien will be paid the actual or prevailing wage.
If a graduate of an Australian institution, you do not usually need to provide certified copies or evidence of their U.S. equivalent, but take to your visa interview the original certificates, and if possible, transcripts for the course of study. If your qualification(s) are not from an Australian institution, a certified copy of the foreign degree and evidence that it is equivalent to the required U.S. degree could be used to satisfy the “qualifying credentials” requirement.
Evidence establishing that the applicant’s stay in the United States will be temporary.
A certified copy of any required license or other official permission to practice the occupation in the state of intended employment if so required or, where licensure is not necessary to commence immediately the intended specialty occupation employment upon admission, evidence that the alien will be obtaining the required license within a reasonable time after admission.
Evidence of payment of the Machine Readable Visa (MRV) Fee, also known as the application fee. This is payable at Australia Post, and applicants should bring the post office receipt to the interview as evidence of payment.
The dependent must make a separate visa application, which involves most of the same steps as the principal applicant’s application, namely completing the required forms, paying the application fee, and scheduling a visa interview with a U.S. consular officer.
The dependent does not need to provide the principal applicant’s Labor Condition Application (LCA) or evidence of employment, but needs to show that the principal applicant is the recipient of an E-3 visa by providing a copy of the visa or, if the applicant has obtained E-3 status in the U.S., the I-797 Approval Notice. The dependent can apply and arrange a visa interview at the same time as the principal applicant, or can apply and be interviewed later, once the principal applicant’s E-3 visa is issued. The principal applicant does not need to be present at the dependent’s interview. Each dependent must make a separate visa application, but children under 14 who are Australian citizens or permanent residents of Australia are not usually required to attend an interview.
The spouse of a qualified E non-immigrant may, upon admission to the United States, apply with the Department of Homeland Security for an employment authorization document (EAD). Under a valid EAD the spouse may work in any occupation at any employer.