Trainee H-3 Visa

The H-3 Nonimmigrant Visa Category is for an Alien Temporarily Coming to the United States as Either a:

1. Trainee to receive training other than graduate or medical education training that is not available in the alien’s home country, or
2. Special Education Exchange Visitor to participate in a special education exchange visitor training program for children with physical, mental, or emotional disabilities.


The individual or organization that invites an H-3 trainee to the U.S. for the purpose of receiving the above stated training can be in any field including, but not limited to:

— Commerce
— Communications
— Finance
— Government
— Transportation
— Agriculture
— Or the professions

This classification is not intended for employment within the United States. It is designed to provide an alien with job related training for work that will ultimately be performed in the alien’s home country.

Eligibility Criteria

The sponsoring employer must demonstrate that the:

1. Suggested training is not offered in the beneficiary’s home country
Position for the beneficiary will not be one within the normal operation of the business and in which citizens and resident aliens are regularly employed
Beneficiary will be employed specifically to training only
The beneficiary will benefit in pursuing a career outside the U.S.

Duration of Stay

H-3 alien trainees are allowed to stay in the U.S. for a maximum of two years. Generally, the visa is issued for the length of the training program. If the alien trainee remains in the country for a full two years, he/she must leave the U.S. for six months so as to obtain a new H visa.

Dependent Benefits

H-3 spouses and unmarried children under the age of 21 qualify for H-4 status under the same limitations as the principal H-3 trainee. The H-4 visa holders are not eligible to obtain employment authorization unless they independently qualify for authorization to work.