What exactly is an E3 Visa?

What exactly is an E3 Visa?

Many Australians want to live and work in the U.S.A but aren’t quite sure how, or where to start. We are in an extremely lucky position when it comes to traveling to the United States, we have a great relationship with the US government, with a passport that has very few issues entering the country.

 For those travelling to the states on short holiday (3 months or less), an ESTA visa is available to purchase for a small fee of around $14. It takes about 15 minutes to apply, pay for, and generally receive a seamless approval.

Now, for those wanting to make the big move, the visa process is a little different. We have access to an E-3 Nonimmigrant visa. Around 10,500 visas are permitted per year to Australian citizens to live and work in the USA for 2 years with the option to renew.

To qualify for E3 classification, you must, among other things, be an Australian national who is seeking employment in a specialty occupation requiring possession of a bachelor’s degree or higher (or its equivalent), and possess the appropriate degree (or its equivalent) in the field in which you wish to work.

To qualify for an E3 visa, an applicant must demonstrate the following:

  • You must have a legitimate offer of employment in the US describing your occupation, anticipated length of stay, and salary/remuneration arrangements.

  • The position you are offered must qualify as specialty occupation employment. You must possess a special set of skills – e.g.  being a role in a professional field that requires the application of knowledge obtained in a Bachelor’s Degree (or equivalent).

  • You must be an Australian citizen.


In addition, an approved Labor Condition Application is required.

Note: The E-3 Nonimmigrant category should not be confused with the separate and independent H-1B nonimmigrant category for “specialty occupation” workers.

Unlike the H1B visa, spouses of E3 visa holders are now able to work in the United States – eliminating a barrier that in practice has stopped many Australians from applying for temporary residence in the US. Spouses also don’t have to be Australian citizens.

So are you ready to start searching for e3 work visa-eligible jobs? We’ve compiled an expansive list of e3 visa resources to help you embark on your journey to living and working in the USA. Begin here!

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