How to Get E3 Visa – Working in the US in a Specialty Occupation

how to get e3 visa

The E-3 visa is for Australian citizens working in an occupation requiring at least a bachelor’s degree and which cannot be fulfilled through traditional employment arrangements.

Employers must submit a Labor Condition Application (LCA) to the US Department of Labor, while applicants should present a copy when applying for their visas.

Employer Requirements

The E3 visa is open to Australian citizens who hold job offers in certain specialty occupations within the US. This visa enables you to work there for up to two years, making it a fantastic option for employers seeking top talent from Australia. Furthermore, spouses and children of E3 visa holders may live and work alongside you within US borders.

To obtain an E-3 visa, the sponsoring employer must submit a Labor Condition Application (LCA) to USCIS. This form outlines wage levels and details about whether a job will be full- or part-time, along with signatures from both prospective employers or their attorneys or agents. Furthermore, their business must possess an Employer Identification Number or FEIN which acts like an ABN registration number in US law.

A Company Support Letter (CSL) is a document written on company letterhead that provides background information about the US employer sponsoring you, such as specialty occupation and job description, as well as benefits of your work to them and qualifications required for their position. A third-party Equivalency Assessment report may also be necessary if an E-3 applicant does not possess a Bachelors degree – this is conducted by an independent professional to compare an individual’s work experience against that required for a Bachelor’s in their specialty occupation.


The E-3 visa is a work visa available to Australian citizens who wish to undertake specialty occupations in the US. The visa can be applied for in either part- or full-time roles and requires your prospective US employer to lodge a Labor Condition Application (LCA) with the Department of Labor before you submit your petition for your E-3 visa petition – with each LCA having specific roles and addresses being certified by them before proceeding further with applying.

Contrary to H-1B visa, E-3 visa applicants do not require being employed by a US company in order to secure one. Instead, their specialty occupation must require at least a bachelor’s degree or equivalent professional experience – in addition, an LCA should be filed that pays at least the prevailing wage within their field of expertise.

If you do not possess a bachelor’s degree, your years of professional experience can serve as proof that you qualify for this position. A third party assessment could also prove that these years equate to that of having received a bachelor’s degree in that same field of study. US consular officers may be concerned whether you will have enough income when living in America – having significant savings can help ease such worries.


The E3 visa provides Australian citizens the ability to temporarily work in a specialty occupation in the US for an indefinite period, making it a good option if you already have a job offer and academic qualifications to do so. Furthermore, this visa can be renewed indefinitely with changes permitted within its boundaries allowing a change of status within America itself.

An E3 visa involves extensive paperwork, such as filing the Labor Condition Application (LCA) and proof of eligibility. Employers must submit this LCA on behalf of employees to be approved by the Department of Labor; it must demonstrate that employees meet prevailing wage standards in their occupation, that jobs will be filled, and ensure there will be enough workers. Furthermore, employers are also required to attest wages paid out to E-3 workers as well as provide return airfare home if an employee leaves early before the end of their authorized stay in the US.

Once your LCA has been approved, you can then apply for an E3 visa at a US Consulate in your home country. When applying, submit original passport, LCA approval certificate and any supporting documentation as well as attending an interview with a consular officer who will ask questions about your job and qualifications before providing you with your E3 visa valid for two years with possible renewal indefinitely.


If you are an Australian working in the United States and have been invited for a visa interview, don’t panic – many other Australian expats have gone through it and it won’t be as daunting as it first seems. Knowing what to expect and having all necessary documentation ready in advance will allow for smooth proceedings; our E3 Visa Guide details this process along with providing a quick checklist that can assist in your preparations.

An adjudicator will conduct the interview and ask questions regarding your professional background, nature of job being offered and connections to Australia. They may also inquire into travel history as well as previous work or study experience in the United States. Your performance at interview will play an essential part in whether or not your visa application will be approved.

Your documents for an interview must include Form DS-160 (online nonimmigrant visa application), your LCA filed by your employer and an appointment letter from USCIS. Being prepared is key; make sure all questions asked of you can be answered satisfactorily during the interview and bring copies of passport and any supporting documentation with you for reference.