H-3 Visa Petition – Trainee

1. Procedure for Petition with CIS. 8 C.F.R. 214.2 (h) (7) (ii).

The H-3 Visa Trainee’s employer must petition the CIS for permission to hire the trainee by filing Form I-129, Petition for Nonimmigrant Worker, with the CIS service center responsible for the area where the H-3 visa trainees will receive their training.

In the petition for H-3 visa trainee status, the employer must demonstrate that:

  • The proposed training is not available in the H-3 Visa Trainee’s own country;
  • The H-3 Visa Trainee will not be placed in a position that is in the normal operation of the business and in which U.S. citizens and resident workers are regularly employed;
  • The H-3 Visa Trainee will not engage in productive employment unless such employment is incidental and necessary to the training; and
  • The training will benefit the H-3 Visa Trainee in pursuing a career outside the U.S.


Each petition for an H-3 trainee visa must also include a statement that:

  • Describes the type of training and supervision to be given, and the structure of the training program;
  • Sets forth the proportion of time that will be devoted to productive employment;
  • Shows the number of hours that will be spent, respectively, in classroom instruction and in on-the-job training;
  • Describes the career abroad for which the training will prepare the H-3 Visa Trainee;
  • Indicates the reasons why such training cannot be obtained in the H-3 Visa Trainee’s country and why it is necessary for the individual to be trained in the U.S.; and
  • Indicates the source of any remuneration received by the trainee and any benefit which will accrue to the employer for providing the training.


2. Restrictions on H-3 Visa Training Programs. 8 C.F.R. 214.2 (h) (7) (iii).

  • A petition will be denied if the prospective H-3 visa trainee’s training program:
  • Deals in generalities with no fixed schedule, objectives, or means of evaluation;
  • Is incompatible with the nature of the employer’s business;
  • Is on behalf of a foreign trainee who already possesses substantial training and expertise in the proposed field of training;
  • Is in a field in which it is unlikely that the knowledge or skill will be used outside the U.S.;
  • Will result in “productive employment” beyond that which is incidental and necessary to the training;
  • Is designed to recruit and train foreign citizens for the ultimate staffing of domestic operations in the U.S.;
  • Does not establish that the employer has the physical plant and sufficiently trained manpower to provide the training specified; or
  • Is designed to extend the total allowable period of practical training previously authorized a nonimmigrant student.