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Understanding third preference EB-3

When it comes to employment-based immigration, it's important to understand the finer details of third preference EB-3.

Many people are eligible for third preference EB-3. Here is some information regarding skilled workers, professionals and those who fit into the "other worker" category:

  • Skilled workers. These are people who require a minimum of two years of experience or training, as opposed to somebody who is taking on temporary or seasonal employment.
  • Professional workers. This includes any worker whose job requires a minimum of a U.S. baccalaureate degree or a foreign equivalent degree.
  • Other workers. This is for any individual who is performing unskilled labor that requires fewer than two years of experience or training. Also, this may not be for a seasonal or temporary position.

Strict eligibility requirements

It's easy to believe that you or somebody you are hiring will be eligible for third preference EB-3, but this is not always the case. There are strict eligibility requirements that must be met.

For example, professional workers must:

  • Be able to prove that you hold a U.S. baccalaureate degree or a foreign equivalent degree
  • Be able to perform a job for which qualified workers from within the United States are not available
  • Not attempt to substitute experience and/or education for a baccalaureate degree

The hiring company can help

Many individuals believe they are on their own when attempting to secure third preference EB-3 status, but his or her soon-to-be employer can actually help move things forward.

In fact, the employer is required to file Form I-140, Petition for Alien Worker. They must also show proof of their ability to pay the offered wage, such as by providing a tax return or annual report.

As confusing as employment-based immigration and third preference EB-3 status appear, there are things you can do to better understand where you fit in and what your potential employer can do to assist with the process. You don't want to make any mistakes along the way that could jeopardize your chance of an approval.

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