The H-3 Trainee Visa
The H-3 visa is a non-immigrant visa allowing aliens to attend a traineeship in the U.S., i.e. they are allowed to work in compliance with their visa. This visa is most often used by firms and companies working with a parent company or subsidiary abroad that want to give a unique work experience to the alien as a trainee.
Who is eligible?
In addition to being admissible in general, the alien beneficiary must meet the following requirements:
- Receive no graduate medical education or training in the U.S.
- Not have the opportunity to receive this kind of training in his/her home country.
- Need this traineeship to advance his/her career outside the U.S.
Additionally, the petitioner has to submit a training program explaining the necessity and specialty of this traineeship by showing:
- That the training won't result in productive employment.
- That it is highly structured and organized.
- That the alien beneficiary is trained for a position abroad but not necessarily for one with the U.S. employer.
Length of Stay
There is a time limit of two years for the initial issue of an H-3 visa. Usually, it is issued for the time of the traineeship. If the alien stays in the U.S. for a full two years, he/she has to leave the U.S. for six months in order to receive a new H or L visa.
First, the U.S. employer ( petitioner ) has to file the petition with a regional INS office. After receiving the approval notice, the alien beneficiary obtains with this approved petition an H-3 visa with a U.S. consulate abroad. Change of status ( changing from another non-immigrant visa classification to H-3 without leaving the U.S. ) may also be available, but not in every case.
Finally, when the beneficiary applies for admission into the U.S. with his/her issued visa stamp, it is advisable to have the original approval notice.
Forms and Documents Checklist
Step One: Petition
- Form I-129 and H-Supplement.
- Detailed statement from the U.S. employer describing the training program.
- Documents proving previous, relevant experiences.
- Diplomas showing the completion of any necessary education.
- Letters from companies in the home country or from the government stating that similar training is unavailable in the home country.
- Proof of opportunities to use the training at home: Letter from a foreign employer explaining how the training will further your career in the home country, or letter from the home country's labor department describing job opportunities for persons with the type of training you will receive in the U.S.
Step two: Application
- OF-forms (available from U.S. consulates abroad).
- Notice of approval of the H-3 visa petition.
- Valid passport for you and each accompanying relative.
- One passport-type photo of you and each accompanying relative.
- Long form birth certificate for you and each accompanying relative.
- Marriage certificate if you are married and bringing your spouse.
- Documents showing that close family members or property are being left behind in your home country.
- Documents showing a job is waiting on your return to your home country.
NOTE: This is the process of obtaining a visa for a person who is outside the United States. A person who is inside the U.S. may be allowed to change from his/her current visa to an H-3 visa.
For in-depth information, contact Capriotti & Associates to schedule a consultation appointment.
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It does not substitute for the services of an immigration attorney in a specific case.
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