USA non-immigrant visas for workers and businesses

This section includes information on the most popular non-immigrant US work visas. For businesses E-2 Treaty Investor visas and L-1 intracompany transfer visas allow entry to the US with relatively small investments for both businessmen and employees.  E-3 Visas are designed for graduate level Australian citizens to work in specialty occupations in the US.

E-1 Treaty Trader and E-2 Treaty Investor Visas and E-3 visas for Australians

  • E-2 Treaty Investor For those who have made a significant investment in a US business in which the investor has at least a 50% ownership.  In many cases the investment can be at a level of say tens of thousands of dollars
  • E-1 Treaty Trader For businesses and individuals engaged in substantial international trade between the US and the treaty investor country.
  • E-3 Specialty Occupation Professionals For Australian nationals to come to the US to engage in a specialty occupation role.   The quota is never fully used.  Unlike with the US H-1B visa.

L-1A Intracompany Transfer as an Executive or Manager or as a L-1B Specialized Knowledge Employee

L-1 visasThis category allows multinational companies to transfer workers from their overseas operations to a US branch, or to send a representative to the US in order to establish a US branch of their business.

Other non-immigrant US work visas

  • H-1B visas: For graduate level workers usually with at least a bachelors degree or equivalent coming to the US to take a job in a speciality occupation, or to undertake specialist research for the US government's Department of Defence, or for successful fashion models. When the US economy is doing well there is a serious shortage of visas. Currently the visas run out within a few days of becoming available in the beginnint of April each year.  The lottery for available visas mean that the chances of obtaining a visa are quite low.   Customers may also be interested in our guide to obtaining a B-1 visa in lieu of an H-1B visa, which may be relevant in some cases.
  • H-2B visasFor workers coming to the US to fill a temporary or seasonal shortage that is not in the agricultural sector. The employer must apply to USCIS for permission to employ migrants on this visa.
  • J-1 visas: For workers and students coming to the US to take part in a recognised Exchange Visitor Program. The J-1visa is similar to the Q-1, with the main difference being that the J-1 allows students as well as workers to enter the US, while the Q-1 is solely for workers.

  • TN-1 visas: This visa is similar to the H-1B, but allows Canadian citizens to gain a visa with greater ease

  • O visas: This visa category is for people who are recognised at a national or international level for their extraordinary ability or achievement in one of several fields. There are 4 O visa sub-categories.

Further information, help, and advice's team of specialists has over 25 years of experience in immigration services, and have helped thousands of people to study and work in the US. All applications for US visas are dealt with by an in-house US qualified lawyer who is also typically a member of the American Immigration Lawyers Association (AILA).

For more information and advice on US immigration law and US visa applications please contact us on 0344 991 9222 or at