The EB-3 permanent worker visa is for permanent workers falling into 3 categories: skilled workers, unskilled workers, and professionals. All visas for permanent workers (EB visas) can be used to file for permanent residence status, also known as getting your green card.
A “skilled worker” is any worker with at least 2 years of job training or experience in the field. A “professional” is anyone with a U.S. baccalaureate degree or equivalent. You should be planning to work in a field that normally requires you level of education and that the work you will be doing does not have other qualified workers already in the U.S. For professionals, you cannot exchange experience for education. An “Unskilled worker” should be able to work for at least 2 years in an unskilled position. An unskilled position is one that needs less than 2 years of training or experience. The position cannot be seasonal.
If you are an EB-3 visa holder, your spouse can also be admitted into the U.S. Your children may also be admitted with you if granted EB-3 status.
Visas to permanent workers are limited in number each year. Likewise, visas for all 3 categories’ of EB-3 are widely sought after and there may be a wait, especially for the unskilled worker category. Each step of the application process may take processing time, governmental review, or other approval which could lengthen the time it takes to get your visa.
If you are eligible for the EB-3 status visa, there is a multi-step application process:
- Have your prospective employer file for Labor Certification on your behalf with the U.S. Department of Labor. All EB-3 status applicants must be granted Labor Certification. For more information about Labor Certification, see the LCA info page under “more…”
- Have your prospective U.S. employer file a petition for alien employee with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services Office closest to where you will be working. This petition has a filing fee of $580 USD
- Apply for your permanent work visa. Be sure to include any necessary documents showing any claims about education, work experience, or personal information given in your application. If you are undergoing removal proceedings in the U.S. right now, you may have specific application instructions that will be given to you be the immigration court processing your removal.
- Once lawfully present in the U.S., apply for a change of status to get your permanent residence card.
For more information and help with getting a visa, contact immigration attorney Phillip Kim.