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E-3 VISA - Frequently Asked Questions


Do I need a petition by my employer to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS)?

Your United States-based employer is not required to submit a petition to the Department of Homeland Security as a prerequisite for visa issuance. However, your employer must obtain a Labor Condition Application (LCA), ETA Form 9035, from the Department of Labor.


What does my US employer need to do?

A US-based employer that wants to sponsor you for an E-3 visa must obtain a Labor Condition Application (LCA) from the US Department of Labor. The potential employer must also provide you with a job letter that establishes that you will be engaged in qualifying work in a “specialty occupation” and will be paid the actual or prevailing wage for that specialty occupation. Unlike most other temporary employment visas the US-based employer does not need to submit a petition for pre-approval to the USCIS.


How long is the E-3 visa valid?

The validity of the visa should not exceed the validity period of the LCA. The Department of State and DHS have agreed to a 24-month maximum validity period for E-3 visas. This validity may be renewed.


Can I renew the E-3 visa? Is there a limit to the amount of times I can renew?

E-3 applicants are admitted for a two-year period renewable indefinitely, provided the alien is able to demonstrate that he/she does not intend to remain or work permanently in the U.S.

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How can I apply for an extension or renew my E-3 visa?

You can extend your E-3 visa indefinitely.

  • E-3 Specialty Occupation Workers may be admitted initially for a period not to exceed the validity period of the accompanying E-3 Labor Condition Application (LCA), i.e., for a maximum of two years.
  • If you wish to extend your E-3 stay in the US in a specialty occupation that requires a license or other official permission to practice in the specialty occupation, you must submit a copy of the license or proof of other official permission to practice the occupation in the jurisdiction of intended employment, with your extension application.
  • There is no limit on the total time you may stay in the US in E-3 status. Therefore, there is no specified number of extensions a qualifying E-3 worker may be granted. Your E-3 visa status can be renewed indefinitely.

Is there a limit to the number of E-3 visas?

Yes, there will be a maximum of 10,500 E-3 visas issued annually. Spouses and children of principal applicants do not count against the numerical limitations.


Does the E-3 visa category support the doctrine of dual intent?

No, the E-3 nonimmigrant visa does not support the doctrine of dual intent. You must establish to the satisfaction of the consular officer or the USCIS that the employment opportunity is both temporary and short-term, and that you have no intent of remaining permanently in the US.


Do I need to demonstrate a 'residence abroad'?

E-3 status provides for entry on a non-permanent basis into the U.S. Similar to E-1 and E-2 visa applicants, the E-3 must satisfy the consular officer that s/he intends to depart upon termination of status.

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