The E-3 and H-1B visas are similar but have some key differences. This post summarizes the key similarities and difference between the H-1B and E-3 visas.
You can find out more about the E-3 visa by clicking here.
You can find out more about the H-1B visa by clicking here.
|Is there a visa lottery?||Yes. For the last several years, the H-1B has been subject to a lottery as far more applicants apply than available visas||No|
|Which Nationalities can Apply?||Nationals from any country can apply||Only Australian Nationals can apply (Requires a passport from Australia)|
|What is the application process?||Application must be submitted to USCIS and after USCIS approves the petition, the applicant can go to a Consulate to get the Visa. USCIS could take months to process the petition unless you pay for premium processing.||Most applicants apply at a Consulate where they bring their supporting documentation and get a decision right away. USCIS is also an option but premium processing does not exist for this petition.|
|When can you apply?||For cap subject H-1B petitions, applications can only be made in April for a start date of October.||Anytime|
|Does the visa require a specialty occupation and a BA?||Yes. Both visas have a minimum requirement that the applicant have a BA and the job must require a BA.||Yes|
|Is a Labor Condition application required?||Yes||Yes|
|Who can pay for the Petition?||Employer||Employer|
|Which petition is more expensive?||H-1B petitions are more expensive as significant Government imposed filing fees and likely RFE costs||Applicant only has to pay Consular fees (normally $205). Also, typically no RFE|
|How are family treated? Can my spouse work?||Spouse can only work under very limited circumstances where the primary applicant is going through a green card process.||Spouse can apply for work authorization and can work anywhere.|
|What are the employer Obligations?||Significant compliance requirements including paying for the return flight home of applicant if he/she is terminated||Employer does not have to pay for return flight home if applicant is terminated.|
|How long can the visa be issued for?||3 years at a time up to a maximum of 6 years||No cap on the number of renewals and issued in 3 year increments|
|Which petition has the higher approval rate||Approval rate of approximately 70%||Approval rate of over 95%|
|Is the visa dual intent?||Yes||No (but applicant need not maintain a residence in their home country)|
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