U.S. Visa Options for Australian Citizens
Australia shares a special bond with the United States, as shown by the thousands of Australians living, working, or studying in the U.S. As a result of a various treaties between Australia and the United States, there are several visa and green card options available.
E-3 Visa for Australians
The most popular U.S. work visa for Australians is the E-3 visa, for people with bachelor degrees in a specialized occupation. The visa requires a U.S. employer to offer the Australian a position in an occupation that requires a bachelor's degree. Examples of occupations include: social worker, graphic designer, accountant, financial analyst, etc. The E-3 visa may be approved for up to 2 years and renewable indefinitely. Australians can accept either full-time or part-time employment with an E-3 visa, and they may work for more than one employer if they are approved for multiple E-3's. Learn more about the E-3 visa for Australians.
E-2 Treaty Investor Visa for Australians
Australian citizens who are either buying an existing business or starting a new business may be eligible for an E-2 treaty investor visa. To qualify, the primary applicant must own at least 50% of the U.S. business; have invested a "substantial amount" towards the purchase or the startup; the business must be "active and commercial"; and the applicant must be coming to the U.S. to direct and oversee operations.
H-1B Visa for Australians
While similar to the E-3 visa, Australian citizens are also eligible for an H-1B visa if they are sponsored by a U.S. employer. The criteria for an H-1B visa is similar to an E-3 visa. The most notable differences are that there is an annual quota for the H-1B that is met just about every fiscal year. There is an annual quota for E-3 visas, but it is almost never met.