EB-3 Visa is an Employment-Based Immigrant Visa category that can be applied by skilled professionals as well as unskilled people. There are certain eligibility requirements that one must fulfill to apply for an EB3 visa either a skilled visa or an unskilled one.
Now, you might be wondering, what are the EB-3 – Unskilled Visa and an EB-3 – Skilled Visa?
Let’s dive deeper into each different type of EB3 Visa.
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EB-3: Employment-Based Immigration – Skilled Visa – Skilled Workers Professionals and Other Workers
EB-3 Skilled Worker Visa preference category can be applied by any skilled foreign worker who meets the eligibility requirements. As per the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) website, skilled workers are the ones who can be employed in jobs requiring at least 2 years of training or experience. Those jobs cannot be temporary jobs or a job of seasonal nature. There are several qualification criteria and requirements that one must fulfill to work on an EB-3 employment-based visa as a skilled worker. Those requirements are concerned with the educational, training, or experience requirements of the employment opportunity.
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A skilled worker must have the ability to manifest at least 2 years of job experience, education, or training. A person is considered a skilled worker only if those experiences, advanced degrees, or training are related to the employment requirement as mentioned on the labor certification. A person holding a post-secondary education might also be counted as training and might be eligible to apply for the EB-3 Skilled Visa. Moreover, the job that a skilled worker in the EB-3 visa is employed for must have had no worker available in the United States. Meaning, the definite demand for the foreign person on that particular job must be shown to be able to apply for the EB-3 Skilled Visa.
EB-3 Professionals Visa preference category can be applied by any professionals who meet the eligibility of the application process requirement. As per the USCIS website, for a person to be considered a professional, the job that the person is applying for must have a requirement of having a minimum of a US baccalaureate degree and being a member of the profession.
Any foreign degree equivalent to the US baccalaureate degree is also considered. For the person to be able to apply for the EB-3 Professionals Visa preference category, along with the proof of having a US baccalaureate or a foreign degree equivalent to the US degree, the job must also have a US baccalaureate degree as the normal requirement for entry into the occupation. Like the EB-3 Skilled Worker Visa preference category, while applying for the EB-3 Professionals Visa preference category the definite demand for the foreign person for that particular job must also be shown. Moreover, while applying for this visa, one should be aware that education and experience may not be substituted for a baccalaureate degree. In addition, to be eligible for this visa, the person must also be able to meet any other requirement as per the labor certification.
EB-3 Other Workers Visa preference category can be applied by any foreign worker who meets the eligibility requirements for this visa type. The ‘other workers’ or the ‘unskilled workers’, refer to the person working in the job requiring less than 2 years of training, education, or experience. But, the job cannot be a temporary job or a job with seasonal nature.
An unskilled worker must be able to show the ability to perform the unskilled labor that requires less than 2 years of training or experience. As with the other types of EB-3 visas, while applying for the EB-3 Other Workers Visa preference category, the definite demand for the foreign person on that particular job must also be shown. In addition, to be eligible for this visa, the person must also be able to meet any other requirement as per the labor certification.
Can Family of EB-3 Visa Holders apply too?
This is one of the questions that many people are really concerned about when applying for an EB-3 Visa. As per the USCIS website, if the I-40 petition of the person applying for this visa is approved, then the spouse and unmarried children under 21 years old are eligible to apply for the E34, E35, EW4, or an EW5 visa.
Well, what are these E34, E35, EW4, or EW5 visas?
E34 visa is a visa that a spouse of a Skilled Worker or a Professional holding an EB-3 visa of their respective type can apply for.
E35 visa is a visa that a child of a Skilled Worker or a Professional holding an EB-3 visa of their respective type can apply for.
EW4 visa is a visa that a spouse of an ‘other worker’ or an ‘unskilled worker’ holding an EB-3 Other Workers Visa preference category can apply for.
EW5 visa is a visa that a child of an ‘other worker’ or an ‘unskilled worker’ holding an EB-3 Other Workers Visa preference category can apply for.
Green Card (EB-3 Visa) for Unskilled and Low Skilled Workers
To apply for the EB-3 Unskilled (Other Workers) Visa, there are several processes and steps that need to be followed.
There are different ways how a foreigner can acquire the EB-3 Unskilled visa. One can apply for an EB-3 Unskilled visa either by I) adjusting their student visa or any other visa type to the EB-3 visa or II) applying from the foreign nation for the EB-3 Visa through the process of getting interviewed at the local US Embassy or Consulate.
What is the process to obtain the EB-3 Unskilled Visa?
- Step 1: Permanent Labor Certification Process
A permanent labor certification process is something that allows employers in the United States to hire foreign nationals to work permanently in the US. The US employers need to submit an immigration petition to the USCIS. The petition is the USCIS I-140 form. But before the submission of the petition, the employers must acquire a labor certification from the Department of Labor’s (DOL) Employment and Training Administration (ETA).
Then, the DOL must confirm to the USCIS that there are insufficient US workers that are qualified or are willing to work for that job. The DOL must also certify that hiring foreign national workers will not harm the wages and other US workers employed.
The Job Offer is then offered by the employer confirming that there is a lack of qualified US workers for that job opportunity.
Prevailing Wage Request Filing is then done by filling out the ETA 9141 prevailing wage request form. This form contains the position detail which includes the job title, duties, location, and other requirements. It also requests for the minimum required wage from the DOL for that job role. The processing time for this varies but, it generally takes about 5 months.
Advertising is the next process for obtaining EB3- Unskilled Visa. There is a certain requirement of The Permanent labor certification that must be fulfilled as part of advertising. It requires two printed ads in the Major Sunday Newspaper and an internal PERM Notice of Filing. It is required to prove that the employers are not depriving other capable US workers of employment opportunities.
ETA 9089 Labor Certification Filing is the next step in the recruitment process. After the recruitment period of the advertised employment opportunity is ended without having any qualified workers applying for it, the ETA 9089 Labor Certification can be filed.
- Step 2: I-140 USCIS Filing
Once all the processes in Step 1 are completed, the employer along with the foreign national petition DHS for the EB-3 visa. It is done with the form called an I-140 petition form.
- Step 3: Adjustment of Status (inside the US) / Consular Processing (outside the US)
After the completion of Step 2, there is a need for adjustment of status or consular processing.
Adjustment of Status (inside the US)
If the person applying for the EB-3 visa is in the US in another Visa status then, at this point, the person will need to adjust their status to the EB-3 with a form called an I-485 with DHS when priority dates are current in Visa Bulletin.
After the I-140 and the I-485 are approved, the person applying for the EB-3 Visa will then get interviewed by DHS and, if there are no issues, then the person gets approved for the Green Card.
Consular Processing (outside the US)
If the person applying for the EB-3 visa is in a foreign nation then, after the I-140 is approved by USCIS, the person will get an email from the National Visa Center. The email will contain the instructions on the required documents to take to the US Embassy for the interview. If the person is accepted during the interview then, a permanent residence visa is granted to the person. After that, the person will be able to travel to the US for their permanent employment with the sponsoring company.
How long does the whole process take?
The process to apply for the EB-3 visa is a matter of concern especially, if the dependent is getting close to 21 years or if your current US visa status is soon to expire.
Even if there are no issues, the timing is still a crucial thing as the person will need to make plans for the relocation as per the job location.
The immigration process for the EB-3 can take anywhere between 12-24 months depending on the case. An important thing to note is any changes in immigration laws will not be applied, once the immigration process has started.
If you are looking to apply for the EB-3 visa then, you can visit BDV Solutions and Kennedy Access websites. They both are consulting agencies that help foreign nationals to apply for the EB-3 visa.
Note: We are not related to any of these agencies.