H1Base Review: E3 Visa Jobs 2013 (AUSFTA Work Permit)

H1Base Review - E3 VisaEnacted in 2005, the E3 Visa is a non-immigrant work visa that allows Australian professionals in specialty occupations to live and work in the USA. While it was created in the wake of the Australian-US Free Trade Agreement (AUSFTA), the visa isn't actually a formal component of the agreement. On a yearly basis, 10,500 of these visas are reserved for Australian Nationals.

In terms of intent, the E3 is similar to the H1B visa -- that is, it's designed to draw highly skilled workers to United States companies. However, it also has some similarities to the TN1 Visa for Mexican and Canadian workers; specifically because it's not a dual-intent visa, and holders are required to establish that their stay in the U.S. will be temporary. But in spite of the fact that the E-3 ostensibly is a temporary visa, it can be renewed and extended every two years indefinitely -- provided, of course, that the E-3 holder remains employed with the sponsoring employer.

The E3 also offers some advantages in how it allows E-3 spouses to apply for work authorization via the Form 1-765 Application for Employment Authorization. In the past, the restriction on spousal work authorization has been a strong barrier for married Australian nationals who were interested in obtaining H1B visas. Application fees for the E-3 are also significantly lower than the ones that apply to the H1B.

And although the E3 is currently available only for Australian Nationals, there has been talk in recent years that some version of the E3 will soon become available for Irish professionals as well. In the near future, we'll discuss where things currently stand in terms of E-3 work authorization for Irish nationals, and -- as always -- H1Base will be sure to keep you updated in future news pieces on any developments that might occur with the Irish E3 Work Visa.

Review of Qualifications for the E3 Work Visa 2013

To get an E3 work visa, certain requirements must be met in addition to meeting standard U.S. immigration regulations. For an E3 Labor Condition Application (LCA) to be successfully filed:

The JOB Has to Qualify: The criteria for an E3 profession is virtually identical to that of the H1B visa, as opposed to the comparatively narrow "job list" mandated by the TN1. For a job to qualify as an E-3 profession, it has to meet the standards of a "specialty occupation" as defined by the Immigration and Nationality Act. In layman's terms, this means that the job has to require an application of specialized knowledge, the attainment of which generally requires the American equivalent of a 4-year Bachelor's degree (minimum) or a considerable amount of experience. 

The SALARY Has to Qualify: An E3 job has to offer a salary that meets very distinct minimum standards. Specifically, the salary has to be equivalent to either the prevailing wage (salary paid to others doing comparable work in the geographic area) or the actual wage (the wage paid by the company), and the wage has to be the higher of the two numbers.

The EMPLOYER has to qualify: An E3-sponsoring employer also is required to meet a plethora of U.S. corporation and immigrant-employment requirements and laws. So while the company has to provide E3 sponsored-employment and pay the E3 visa filing costs, in addition to an appropriate salary; the employer also must (1) prove that employing an international worker won't adversely affect labor conditions of similarly employed workers; (2) be transparent about any strikes, lockouts or work stoppages that might happen before or after after the LCA is filed; (3) display the LCA publicly to employees for a minimum of 10 business days, and in two different locations; and (4) keep and update a public access file.

Occupations & Jobs that Qualify for the E3 Work Visa

As we said previously, an E3-eligible job has to require both "theoretical" and "practical" uses of skills and specialized knowledge. While at first this criteria might seem subjective, E3 regulations actually are fairly clear in what jobs qualify for the visa. And these rules are designed to ensure that only skilled workers and/or degree educated workers can receive the E3 visa.

The jobs that qualify for the E3 work visa include occupations in software/applications development; architecture, engineering and surveying; mathematics; physical sciences; computer science; information technology or IT; telecom; medicine and healthcare; education and research; writing and linguistics; finance and administrative specializations; business management; positions in fields such as economics, political science, history, sociology and anthropology; librarians and archivists; lawyers and judges; religion and theology; illustrators, graphic designers and other art-related occupations; music, entertainment and recreation; social and welfare work; and more. For more information, see this full list of qualifying professions and occupations.

How to Find an E3 2013 Visa Job

When you're looking for an E3 visa-sponsorship position, it's crucial to know EXACTLY which employers hire international workers on E3 visas. It's essentially a waste of you precious time to bother with generalized US job search sites; this is because it's almost impossible to determine if job posters are even interested in shouldering the headache it takes to hire a foreign national. And even if they are by some chance willing to file the visa, it's also impossible to tell  the company have any experience with filing an LCA -- the process is complicated, and if all the steps aren't done correctly, it can result in having your visa application rejected.

To be completely frank, the lion's share of E3 Visa jobs just simply aren't posted on general job sites anyway; most E3-sponsoring employers and companies simply won't advertise them in those places. By contrast, these companies almost exclusively depend on what's known as the "hidden job market" -- that is, jobs are ONLY posted on their websites and job seekers are required to file applications directly to the HR department and/or through the company's own Applicant Tracking System (ATS) on their websites. As a result, E3 job seekers need to know which companies to target, and they have to concentrate on using the most efficient application method(s) possible. Luckily, those are just a few of the many areas in which H1Base can assist E3 visa job seekers in their job hunt.

So are you currently trying to find visa sponsorship employment with the USA's top companies that file E3 visas? Visit H1Base's Professional E 3 Job solutions -- including the E3 Announce Premium and the E3 ProElite Premium Plus packages --  to see how we can help increase and maximize your H1B job search - START HERE

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