Do you want to live and work in the US? We have asked New York-based immigration law firm Cammisa Markel PLLC to bring you the information you will need to get started.
Australians may visit the US for up to 90 days under the Visa Waiver Program (VWP) with an approved ESTA. Upon passing through Customs and Immigration, you simply declare your purpose to be either a visitor for pleasure or a visitor for business. The ESTA is valid for two years, so you may come and go without re-applying during that period.
Note that if you have ever been denied a visa or denied entry to the US, your ESTA application will be denied and you will be directed to obtain a Tourist Visa at the US consulate in Australia.
Wanting to stay?
If you are hoping to stay longer or are looking to work, there are pathways to making it happen. We asked immigration Attorney, Zjantelle Cammisa Markel what you need to know about the non-immigrant visas most commonly used by Australians:
- E-3: Skilled professionals from Australia who hold a degree or equivalent of a degree in a specific field
- J-1: Exchange visitors such as au pairs, camp counselors, physicians, research scholars, trainees, students and recent graduates
- L-1: Employees transferring to the US office of the company they have been working for abroad, for more than one year
- O-1: Individuals with extraordinary ability in the Arts, Science, Business, Education or Athletics
- H1B: Professionals with immigrant intent who hold a Bachelor’s degree or equivalent of a Bachelor’s degree
- E1/E2: Treaty Traders setting up a company in the US that trades with Australia (E-1 visa) or Treaty Investors who invest in a company in the US (E-2 visa)
Want more information?
For more on these and other non-immigrant visas, visit the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) website or contact Cammisa Markel.
Application and issuance fees vary, and are listed on the website of the Embassy of the United States in Australia.
Hear from some of our members about their experiences obtaining work visas for the United States.
This information is provided as a guide only. Although every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided is correct at the time of writing, please consult the relevant authorities to verify the accuracy of the information provided and contact a qualified immigration attorney for legal advice about your specific situation.