Learn More About the EB-3 Visa Application Process

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Written By Juliet D'cruz

The EB-3 Visa program was established to allow foreign nationals with specialized skill sets to work and live in the United States for extended periods of time. There are multiple Visa programs for foreign national workers with special skills or certifications and three types of EB-3 Visa programs. 

The EB-3 Visa application process involves multiple steps and is based on merit or ability. The process begins with an employer filing a petition on behalf of the prospective foreign national worker, but there are other steps that must also be completed as well. The entire EB-3 Visa application process can take up to 3 years to complete, from start to finish.

Here’s what you need to know. 

Filing Paperwork for EB-3 Visa

The employer must first apply for and submit a Permanent Labor Certification application to begin the EB-3 Visa application process. Once this is finished, the Department of Labor (DOL) will determine a fair wage based on the job position and then advertise and recruit for the job. This process can take up to 5 months or more in total. 

Then the DOL can take up to 6 months to make a final decision on the labor certification. During this time, an I-140 form must also be completed and submitted. With premium processing, this form can be accepted in about 15 days, but the process can take up to 6 months without premium processing. 

Lastly, an i-485 form must be processed. This can take 6 months or longer, depending on the center in charge of your specific case. Unfortunately, there is no way to expedite this last form. There are fees that must be paid each step of the way to get the forms processed. 

Fees for EB-3 Visa

There are multiple fees that must be paid each step of the way to ensure proper processing of your EB-3 Visa application. There is a fee for the I-140 form and an optional premium processing fee paid by the employer. They can equal just over $2,000 together, and there may be additional fees, such as advertising fees, that the employer is also responsible for. 

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The I-485 fee and the Consular processing fee equaling close to $1,500, are both paid by the potential employee. They must have a vested interest in coming to work in the United States, and paying those fees shows that they do. 

Hire an Attorney for the EB-3 Visa Application Process

If you are considering the EB-3 application process, you probably want to hire a skilled attorney with specialized experience in the Visa application process. They can help ensure compliance and proper paperwork to reduce the waiting period for approval. All Visa programs, including the EB-3 Visa application process, are subject to industry caps. Only a certain number of Visas are approved annually for each program. 

  1. Working with an attorney who is familiar with the EB-3 Visa application process can help ensure you file the appropriate paperwork at the right time. Partnering with the right attorney can greatly improve your chances of approval in the EB-3 Visa application process while helping you find skilled foreign national workers to fill open positions.