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US – EB3 Visa (Third Preference Employment-based Visa)

EB3 Visa (Green Card)

International skilled workers and professionals may be eligible for an EB-3 Visa.

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What is an EB-3 Visa?

The EB-3 Visa is a Third Priority Worker visa available for skilled workers; professionals who hold a bachelor’s degree and eventually other unskilled workers.

To be eligible, you must hold a baccalaureate degree or at least 2 years of training or working experience.

Every year, the USCIS allocates only around 40,040 visas. When this quota is reached, the remaining applications are put on hold for the following year.

At IAS, our immigration lawyers have already completed several cases of employment-based visas. Therefore, we are here to offer our legal guidance to foreign workers who wish to travel in the U.S. Call us on +1 844 290 6312 for receiving professional advice from our team of qualified immigration lawyers.

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What is an EB3 Green Card?

The EB3 Green Card is a skilled worker visa open to foreign nationals who have received an offer of employment from an U.S.-based sponsor. It is intended for those who do not qualify for other employment-based visas, such as the EB2 Green Card for exceptional ability.

The EB3 visa includes three different subcategories:

  • Skilled workers, who have a minimum of 2 years of training or work experience;
  • Professionals, whose job requires a higher degree and a professional license;
  • Other workers, who are performing a job for which qualified workers are not available in the U.S. at the moment of the petition (EW-3 Visa).

Who is eligible for an EB3 Visa Green Card?

EB3 Category Eligibility Criteria
Skilled workers
  • 2 years of job experience or training
  • You must be performing a role for which qualified workers are not available in the domestic workforce
Professionals
  • Holding a U.S. baccalaureate degree or foreign degree equivalent
  • No skilled worker must be available for that role in the U.S.
  • Adequate job experience (which cannot be substituted by your education background)
Unskilled workers
  • Ability to perform unskilled labor that is not of a temporary or seasonal nature
  • No worker must be available in the domestic workforce

What are the EB-3 requirements?

To be eligible for a skilled worker visa, applicants must:

  • Hold a labor certification;
  • Have a permanent, full-time job;
  • Demonstrate that there is no U.S. workforce available for their job;
  • Have received an offer of employment from an U.S.-based employer.

Based on your EB3 visa category, there are separate requirements to be met:

  • Skilled workers must demonstrate they have at least 2 years of job experience or training;
  • Professionals must hold a position for which a higher degree is required;
  • Unskilled workers must be performing a job for which there is no qualified U.S. workforce available. In this case, they may have less than 2 years of work experience.

What is the EB3 Green card processing time?

The whole EB3 Green Card processing time may take from 1 to 3 years. However, applicants from certain countries may wait up to 6 years because of the annual visa cap.

By paying an additional fee of $1,410, your sponsor can shorten your EB3 Visa processing time. Nevertheless, this may not be of any help if your permit priority date is still not current. Employers qualified for specialty roles from Australia may meet the E3 Visa requirements. Since this permit is only targeted at Australia nationals, the processing time may be shorter.

All the information about the number of available permits is listed in the EB3 Visa bulletin. Before sponsoring your application, your employer needs to prove that there are no U.S. workers qualified for your position. This can be done by getting a labor certification from the Department of Labor (DOL) and filing the ETA Form 9089.

What is the PERM Labor Certification Process?

Employment-based Green Card requires a PERM Labor Certification from the U.S. DOL.

Prospective U.S.-based employers are not allowed to hire foreign workers directly. First, they need to establish that are no available workers already living in the U.S. who can fill the position.

To be approved, the PERM certification must also pass a Prevailing Wage Determination. Thus, your sponsor needs to prove that the job vacancy has also been advertised in major local newspapers and relevant agencies.

The DOL may also ask to access to a detailed record of the recruitment process that has been conducted to fill the position.

Can my family benefit from your EB3 Green Card status?

If you hold a skilled worker visa, your immediate relatives can join you in the U.S.

For skilled workers and professionals, spouses can apply for an E-34 visa. In the same way, eligible unmarried children can apply for an E-35 permit.

If you are on an EW-3 Visa, your spouse may be eligible for an EW-4 visa. Likewise, your children can request an EW-5 visa.

In both cases, eligible spouses of EB-3 Visa holders can apply for an Employment Authorization Document (EAD) to seek the right to work in the U.S.

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Frequently Asked Questions

If the labor certification is approved, your sponsor can petition for your visa by filing the Form I-140. The USCIS will need to access your company’s supporting financial documents, such as statements and tax returns.

At this point, you can fill out your Form DS-261 form your country of residence. Eventually, the USCIS will ask you to undergo a complete medical examination. You also need to attend an interview, where you can present your supporting documents.

It is important to note that EB-3 Green Card applicants always need a sponsoring employer. Self-petitioning is not allowed for this visa.

The EB3 Visa process includes several fees, which both you and your employer must pay. The total application cost consists of:

  • DOL Labor Certification fees (to be paid by your employer);
  • Application processing fees ($345);
  • Fees for filing the Immigration Petition for Alien Worker ($700);
  • Biometric fees for medical examinations;
  • Any other further cost for the translation of your supporting documents;
  • Premium processing fee, if needed ($1,410).

Since this is a considerably demanded visa, the EB3 Green Card processing time may be delayed and intricated. For this reason, it is always best to have an expert by your side.

Our immigration lawyers are happy to support you with your application and offer their best legal guidance.

If you are an employer, we can assist with your PERM Labor Certification. Our service also includes:

  • Checking the EB3 Visa bulletin to help you proceed with your application;
  • Filing your application forms to the higher standard;
  • Reviewing your role within your company and check if you meet the requirements;
  • Following you and your relative through the complete EB3 Visa process.

You can schedule your first consultation calling us on +1844 290 6312 or getting in touch with our online contact form.