O and P Visas

O-1 Visa: Individuals with Extraordinary Ability or Achievement

The O-1 nonimmigrant visa is for the individual who possesses extraordinary ability in the sciences, arts, education, business, or athletics, or who has a demonstrated record of extraordinary achievement in the motion picture or television industry and has been recognized nationally or internationally for those achievements.

The O nonimmigrant classification is commonly referred to as:

1-O-1A: individuals with an extraordinary ability in the sciences, education, business, or athletics (not including the arts, motion pictures or television industry)
2-O-1B: individuals with an extraordinary ability in the arts or extraordinary achievement in motion picture or television industry
3-O-2: individuals who will accompany an O-1, artist or athlete, to assist in a specific event or performance.  For an O-1A, the O-2’s assistance must be an “integral part” of the O-1A’s activity. For an O-1B, the O-2’s assistance must be “essential” to the completion of the O-1B’s production. The O-2 worker has critical skills and experience with the O-1 that cannot be readily performed by a U.S. worker and which are essential to the successful performance of the O-1
4-O-3: individuals who are the spouse or children of O-1’s and O-2’s

General Eligibility Criteria

To qualify for an O-1 visa, the beneficiary must demonstrate extraordinary ability by sustained national or international acclaim and must be coming temporarily to the United States to continue work in the area of extraordinary ability.

Extraordinary ability in the fields of science, education, business or athletics means a level of expertise indicating that the person is one of the small percentage who has risen to the very top of the field of endeavor.

Extraordinary ability in the field of arts means distinction.  Distinction means a high level of achievement in the field of the arts evidenced by a degree of skill and recognition substantially above that ordinarily encountered to the extent that a person described as prominent is renowned, leading, or well-known in the field of arts.

To qualify for an O-1 visa in the motion picture or television industry, the beneficiary must demonstrate extraordinary achievement evidenced by a degree of skill and recognition significantly above that ordinarily encountered to the extent the person is recognized as outstanding, notable or leading in the motion picture and/or television field.

Application Process O-1 Visa

The petitioner should file Form I-129, Petition for Nonimmigrant Worker, (see Form I-129, Petition for Nonimmigrant Worker) with the USCIS office listed on the form instructions.  The petition may not be filed more than one year before the actual need for the alien's services. To avoid delays, the Form I-129 should be filed at least 45 days before the date of employment.

The petitioner must submit Form I-129, Petition for Nonimmigrant Worker, and the following documentary evidence:

Consultation

A written advisory opinion from a peer group (including labor organizations) or a person with expertise in the beneficiary’s area of ability. If the O-1 petition is for an individual with extraordinary achievement in motion picture or television, the consultation must come from an appropriate labor union and a management organization with expertise in the beneficiary’s area of ability.

When a consultation includes a watermark or other distinctive marks to confirm the authenticity of the document, petitioners should submit to USCIS the version containing the watermark or other distinctive marks. Copies of documents that do not contain the appropriate watermark or other distinctive marks may raise doubts about the authenticity of the document and may result in processing delays. For example, USCIS may request that the petitioner submit the original version of the document. To avoid processing delays, petitioners should ensure that they submit the appropriate version and that any associated watermark or other distinctive marks are legible.   

Exceptions to the Consultation Requirement

If the petitioner can demonstrate that an appropriate peer group, including a labor organization, does not exist, then the decision will be based on the evidence of record.

A consultation may be waived for an alien with extraordinary ability in the field of arts if the alien seeks readmission to perform similar services within 2 years of the date of a previous consultation.  Petitioners should submit a waiver request and a copy of the previous consultation with the petition.

Contract between petitioner and beneficiary

A copy of any written contract between the petitioner and the beneficiary or a summary of the terms of the oral agreement under which the beneficiary will be employed.

NOTE:  USCIS will accept an oral contract, as evidenced by the summation of the elements of the oral agreement.  Such evidence may include but is not limited to: emails between the contractual parties, a written summation of the terms of the agreement, or any other evidence which demonstrates that an oral agreement was created.

The summary of the terms of the oral agreement must contain: 

 1-what was offered by the employer
2-what was accepted by the employee

The summary does not have to be signed by both parties to establish the oral agreement.  However, it must document the terms of the employment offered and that the beneficiary has agreed to the offer.

Itineraries

An explanation of the nature of the events or activities, the beginning and ending dates for the events or activities, and a copy of any itinerary for the events or activities, if applicable (see the memorandum “Clarifying Guidance on “O” petition Validity Period). The petitioner must establish that there are events or activities in the beneficiary’s field of extraordinary ability for the validity period requested, e.g. an itinerary for a tour or a series of events.

Agents

A U.S. Agent may be the actual employer of the beneficiary, the representative of both the employer and the beneficiary, or a person or entity authorized by the employer to act for, or in place of, the employer as its agent.

Agent for Multiple Employers
Please note that a petitioner who will be filing as an agent for multiple employers must establish that it is duly authorized to act as an agent for the other employers.  The required conditions can be found on the Requirements for Agents and Sponsors Filing as Petitioners for the O and P Visa Classifications page. 

Additionally, agents filing I-129 petitions for multiple employers must include with the petition:

1-Supporting documentation including a complete itinerary of the event or events which specifies the dates of each service or engagement, the names and addresses of the actual employers, and the names and addresses of the establishments, venues, or locations where the services will be performed
2-Contracts between the actual employers and the beneficiary; and
3-An explanation of the terms and conditions of the employment with required documentation. 
Once the visa petition is approved by USCIS, the beneficiary can apply at a U.S. embassy or consulate for the visa.  Department of State (DOS) establishes visa application processing and issuance fees.  For more information on visa application processing and issuance fees, see the “Department of State Consular Affairs webpage: www.travel.state.gov”.

Agent Performing the Function of an Employer
An I-129 filed by an agent performing the function of an employer must include:

 1-The contractual agreement between the agent and the beneficiary which specifies the wage offered and the other terms and conditions of employment. This can be a summary of the terms of the oral agreement or a written contract. A contract is not required between the beneficiary and the entities that will ultimately use the beneficiary’s services.
2-A petition which requires the alien to work in more than one location must include an itinerary with the dates and locations of work. There are no exceptions to the itinerary requirement when the petition is filed by an agent performing the function of an employer. However, USCIS does give some flexibility to how detailed the itinerary must be and does take into account industry standards when determining whether the itinerary requirement has been met.  As such, the itinerary should at a minimum indicate what type of work the beneficiary will be engaged, where, and when this work will take place

Please note that USCIS relies on the contractual agreement that must be provided with the petition to determine whether the agent is functioning as the employer of the beneficiary.   The contractual agreement should establish the type of working relationship between the agent and beneficiary and should clearly lay out how the beneficiary will be paid.   In totality, if the terms and conditions of employment show a level of control over the beneficiary’s work being relinquished to the agent, then the agent may establish that it is performing the function of an employer.   This determination will be on a case by case basis and will be based on the contractual agreement, whether written or oral. 

The petition must be submitted with evidence regarding the wage offered.  However, the regulations do not contain a prevailing wage requirement.  Furthermore, no particular wage structure is required.  A detailed description of the wage offered or fee structure and that the wage offered/ fee structure was agreed upon may satisfy this requirement.

Agent for Foreign Employers
Agents filing I-129 petitions for foreign employers must submit the minimum general documentary evidence as required for all O-1 petitions which include:

 1-Copies of any written contracts between the foreign employer and the beneficiary or a summary of the terms of the oral agreement under which the beneficiary will be employed
2-An explanation of the nature of the events or activities, the beginning and ending dates for the events or activities, and a copy of any itinerary for the events or activities
3-A written advisory opinion from the appropriate consulting entity or entities

The regulations do not require any additional documentary requirements for an agent filing on behalf of a foreign employer, however, it is the foreign employer who is responsible for complying with all applicable employer sanctions provisions.

Evidentiary Criteria for O-1A

Evidence that the beneficiary has received a major, internationally-recognized award, such as a Nobel Prize, or evidence of at least (3) three of the following:  

1-Receipt of nationally or internationally recognized prizes or awards for excellence in the field of endeavor
2-Membership in associations in the field for which classification is sought which require outstanding achievements, as judged by recognized national or international experts in the field
3-Published material in professional or major trade publications, newspapers or other major media about the beneficiary and the beneficiary’s work in the field for which classification is sought
4-Original scientific, scholarly, or business-related contributions of major significance in the field
5-Authorship of scholarly articles in professional journals or other major media in the field for which classification is sought
6-A high salary or other remuneration for services as evidenced by contracts or other reliable evidence
7-Participation on a panel, or individually, as a judge of the work of others in the same or in a field of specialization allied to that field for which classification is sought
8-Employment in a critical or essential capacity for organizations and establishments that have a distinguished reputation

If the above criteria do not readily apply to the beneficiary’s occupation, the petitioner may submit comparable evidence in order to establish the beneficiary’s eligibility.

Evidentiary Criteria for O-1B

Evidence that the beneficiary has received, or been nominated for, significant national or international awards or prizes in the particular field, such as an Academy Award, Emmy, Grammy or Director's Guild Award, or evidence of at least (3) three of the following:  

1-Performed and will perform services as a lead or starring participant in productions or events which have a distinguished reputation as evidenced by critical reviews, advertisements, publicity releases, publications, contracts or endorsements
2-Achieved national or international recognition for achievements, as shown by critical reviews or other published materials by or about the beneficiary in major newspapers, trade journals, magazines, or other publications
3-Performed and will perform in a lead, starring, or critical role for organizations and establishments that have a distinguished reputation as evidenced by articles in newspapers, trade journals, publications, or testimonials.
4-A record of major commercial or critically acclaimed successes, as shown by such indicators as title, rating or standing in the field, box office receipts, motion picture or television ratings and other occupational achievements reported in trade journals, major newspapers or other publications
5-Received significant recognition for achievements from organizations, critics, government agencies or other recognized experts in the field in which the beneficiary is engaged, with the testimonials clearly indicating the author's authority, expertise and knowledge of the beneficiary's achievements
6-A high salary or other substantial remuneration for services in relation to others in the field, as shown by contracts or other reliable evidence  

If the above standards do not readily apply to the beneficiary’s occupation in the arts, the petitioner may submit comparable evidence in order to establish eligibility (this exception does not apply to the motion picture or television industry).

Application Process O-2 Visa

The petitioner must file a petition with USCIS for the O-2 visa.  The petitioner should file Form I-129, Petition for Nonimmigrant Worker, (see “Form I-129, Petition for Nonimmigrant Worker”) with the USCIS office listed on the form instructions.  An O-2 alien must be petitioned for in conjunction with the services of the O-1 artistic or athletic alien.  The petitioner may not file the Form I-129 more than one year before the O nonimmigrant will begin employment. To avoid delays, Form I-129 should be filed at least 45 days before the date of employment.

The petitioner must submit Form I-129, Petition for Nonimmigrant Worker,  and the following documentary evidence:

Consultation

If the O-2 petition is for support of an individual with extraordinary ability in athletics or the arts, the consultation must be from the appropriate labor organization; or

If the O-2 petition is for support of an individual with extraordinary achievement in motion pictures or television, the consultation must come from an appropriate labor organization and a management organization with expertise in the skill area involved.

Exceptions to the Consultation Requirement:

If the petitioner can demonstrate that an appropriate peer group, including a labor organization, does not exist the decision will be based on the evidence of record.

Agents

See above for details on Agents.

Evidentiary Criteria for O-2

The evidence should establish the current essentiality, critical skills, and experience of the O-2 beneficiary with the O-1 beneficiary and that the beneficiary has substantial experience performing the critical skills and essential support services for the O-1.

In the case of a specific motion picture or television production, the evidence should establish that significant production has taken place outside the United States and will take place inside the United States, and that the continuing participation of the O-2 beneficiary is essential to the successful completion of the production.

Post Petition Approval

Once the visa petition is approved for O-1/O-2 by USCIS, the beneficiary can apply at a U.S. embassy or consulate for the visa.  Department of State (DOS) establishes visa application processing and issuance fees.  For more information on visa application processing and issuance fees, see the “Temporary Workers Visas Department of State” page. 

Period of Stay/Extension of Stay

Initial Period of Stay

Extension of Stay

  Up to 3 years             USCIS will determine time necessary to accomplish the initial event or activity in increments of up to 1 year. 

As an O nonimmigrant, the beneficiary may be admitted to the United States for the validity period of the petition, plus a period of up to 10 days before the validity period begins and 10 days after the validity period ends.  The beneficiary may only engage in authorized employment during the validity period of the petition.

Extension of Stay

The petitioner must request an extension of stay to continue or complete the same event or activity by filing the following documentation with USCIS:

1-Form I-129, Petition for Nonimmigrant Worker
2-A copy of the beneficiary’s Form I-94, Arrival/ Departure Record
3-A statement from the petitioner explaining the reasons for the extension

In order to assist USCIS in adjudication of your request for extension, the statement should describe the event or activity that was the basis for the original approval and confirm that the extension is needed in order for the beneficiary to continue or complete the same event or activity as described.

The beneficiary’s spouse and children must file Form I-539, Application to Extend/Change Nonimmigrant Status, and submit any supporting documents to extend their stay.

For more information see the “Form I-539 Application to Extend/Change Nonimmigrant Status” page.

Family of O-1 and O-2 Visa Holders

Any accompanying or following to join spouse and children under the age of 21 may be eligible to apply for an O-3 nonimmigrant visa, subject to the same period of admission and limitations as the O-1/O-2 nonimmigrant.  They may not work in the United States under this classification, but they may engage in full or part time study on an O-3 visa.

Changing Employers

If you are an O-1 nonimmigrant in the United States and you want to change employers, then your new employer must file a Form I-129 with the USCIS office listed on the form instructions.

If the petition was filed by an agent, an amended petition must be filed with evidence relating to the new employer and a request for an extension of stay.

Material Change in Terms and Conditions of Employment

If there has been any material change in the terms and conditions of the beneficiary’s employment or the beneficiary’s eligibility, the petitioner must file an amended petition on Form I-129 with the Service Center where the original petition was filed.

Note: There are special rule for athletes. When professional athletes with O-1 nonimmigrant status are traded from one team to another, employment authorization will continue with the new team for 30 days during which time the new employer must file a new Form I-129. The simple act of filing the Form I-129, within this 30-day period, extends the employment authorization at least until the petition is adjudicated.  If the new employer does not file a new Form I-129 within 30 days of the trade, the athlete loses his or her employment authorization. The athlete also loses his or her employment authorization if the new Form I-129 is denied.

Return Transportation

If the employment of an O nonimmigrant beneficiary is terminated for reasons other than voluntary resignation, the employer must pay for the reasonable cost of return transportation to the O nonimmigrant’s last place of residence before entering into the United States. If an agent filed the petition for the employer, the agent and the employer are equally responsible for paying these

The Law Offices of Prashanthi Reddy, Pllc has filed many successful O petitions for world renowned actors, singers, musicians and scientists. We are aware of the amount and kind of documentation required and are able to give an accurate opinion on which cases are likely to get approved and which may not be approved, based on prior experience.

P-1A Internationally Recognized Athlete

The P-1 classification applies to you if you are coming to the U.S. temporarily to perform at a specific athletic competition as an athlete, individually or as part of a group or team, at an internationally recognized level of performance.

Individual Athletes Eligibility Criteria

You must be coming to the United States to participate in individual event, competition or performance in which you are internationally recognized with a high level of achievement; evidenced by a degree of skill and recognition substantially above that ordinarily encountered so that the achievement is renowned, leading or well known in more than one country.

Athletic Teams Eligibility Criteria

You must be coming to the United States to participate in team events and must have achieved significant international recognition in the sport. The event in which your team is participating must be distinguished and require the participation of athletic teams of international recognition.

Application Process

To come to the United States your U.S. employer must file a Form I-129, Petition for Non-Immigrant Worker, accompanied by the appropriate fee and supporting documentation.
Please note a petitioner who will be filing as an agent for multiple employers must establish that it is duly authorized to act as an agent. The required conditions can be found at the link to the right (see the memorandum  “Requirements for Agents and Sponsors Filing as Petitioners for the O and P Visa Classifications”.

The U.S. employer must submit a consultation from an appropriate labor organization. The consultation must describe the work or services to be performed in the United States and your qualifications for such work. If no appropriate labor organization exists, this requirement is excused.
For more information about filing a Form I-129, see the  “Form I-129, Petition for Nonimmigrant Worker” page.

Supporting Documents
The Form I-129 must include the following documents:

1-A written consultation from an appropriate labor organization
2-A copy of the contract with a major U.S. sports league or team or a contract in an individual sport commensurate with international recognition in the sport, if such contracts are normally utilized in the sport
3-An explanation of the event and itinerary
4-Documentation of at least two of the following:


A-Evidence of having participated to a significant extent in a prior season with a major United States sports league
B-Evidence of having participated to a significant extent in international competition with a national team
C-Evidence of having participated to a significant extent in a prior season for a U.S. college or university in intercollegiate competition
D-A written statement from an official of a major U.S. sports league or an official of the governing body of the sport which details how you or your team is internationally recognized
E-A written statement from a member of the sports media or a recognized expert in the sport which details how you or your team is internationally recognized
F-Evidence that you or your team is ranked, if the sport has international rankings
G-Evidence that you or your team has received a significant honor or award in the sport

Applying for a Visa at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate
Once the visa petition is approved, you can apply at a U.S. embassy or consulate. For more information on visa application processing and issuance fees, see the  “Department of State, travel.state.gov” page.


Period of Stay/Extension of Stay

 

Initial Period of Stay

Extension of Stay

Individual Athlete - Time needed to complete the event, competition or performance, not to exceed 5 years

Individual Athlete –Increments of up to 5 years in order to continue or complete the event, competition or performance.
Total stay is limited to 10 years.

Athletic Group - Time needed to complete the event, competition or performance, not to exceed 1 year

Athletic Group – Increments of up to 1 year in order to continue or complete the event, competition or performance.

Essential Support Personnel - Time to complete the event, activity, or performance, may not exceed 1 year

Increments of up to 5 years in order to continue or complete the event, competition or performance.
Total stay is limited to 10 years

For additional information on extension of status for P-1 nonimmigrant individual athletes and P-1 essential support personnel see the memos:  “Procedures for Applying the Period of Authorized Stay for P-1 Nonimmigrant Individual Athletes” and “Procedures for Applying the Period of Authorized Stay for P-1S Nonimmigrant Individual Athletes’ Essential Support Personnel."
The Form I-129 is used to apply for a change of status, extension of stay, or change of employment.
For more information see  “Extend my Stay” and “Change my Nonimmigrant Status” pages.
Change of employer
You may change employers, but only after your new employer has filed a new Form I-129 with USCIS requesting permission to employ you and extend your stay. You may not commence employment with the new employer until the Form I-129 has been approved.
Family of P-1A Visa Holders
Your spouse and unmarried children under the age of 21 may obtain P-4 status. Your dependents may not engage in employment, but may attend school or college.
Essential Support Personnel
Essential Support Personnel who are an integral part of the performance of a P-1 athlete (team) and who perform support services which cannot be readily performed by a U.S. worker, are eligible for P-1 classification. Support personnel may include coaches, scouts, trainers and other team officials and referees.
The U.S. employer must file a separate Form I-129 for support personnel. The petition must include the following documents:

1-A consultation from an from an appropriate labor organization with expertise in the area of the support person’s skill
2-A statement describing the support person’s prior and current essentiality, critical skills and experience with the P-1 athlete (team)
3-A copy of a written contract between the employer and the support person or a summary of the terms of the oral agreement under which the support person will be employed

 

 P-1B A Member of an Internationally Recognized Entertainment Group

The P-1B classification applies to you if you are coming to the United States temporarily to perform as a member of an entertainment group that has been recognized internationally as outstanding in the discipline for a sustained and substantial period of time.

Eligibility Criteria
At least 75 percent of the members of your group must have had a substantial and sustained relationship with the group for at least one year.
Your entertainment group must be internationally recognized, having a high level of achievement in a field evidenced by a degree of skill and recognition substantially above that ordinarily encountered. The reputation of the group, not the individual achievements of its members or the acclaim of a particular production, is essential.
Note: Individual entertainers not performing as part of a group are not eligible for this visa classification.

Special Provisions for Certain Entertainment Groups
Alien circus performers and essential circus personnel are exempt the one year requirement and the internationally recognized requirement. The alien or aliens must be coming to join a nationally recognized circus.
Certain nationally known entertainment groups may have the internationally recognized requirement waived if they can establish they have been recognized nationally as outstanding in its discipline for a sustained amount of time in consideration of special circumstances.

Application Process
Your U.S. employer must submit:

1-Form I-129, Petition for a Non-Immigrant Worker accompanied by the appropriate fee and supporting documentation.
Please note that if you are a petitioner who will be filing as an agent for multiple employers you must establish that you are duly authorized to act as an agent. The required conditions can be found in the memorandum “Requirements for Agents and Sponsors Filing as Petitioners for the O and P Visa Classifications."
2-A consultation from an appropriate labor organization regarding the nature of the work to be done or a statement proving that the group has been established and performing regularly for a period of at least one year (If no appropriate labor organization exists, this requirement is excused)

Supporting Documents
Form I-129 must include the following documents:

1-Written consultation from an appropriate labor organization
2-Itinerary with the dates and locations of the performances
3-A copy of the contract between the petitioner and the beneficiary or summary of terms of the oral agreement under which the beneficiary will be employed
4-Evidence that your group has been established and performing regularly for at least one year
5-Statement from the petitioner listing each member of the group and the exact dates for which each member has been employed on a regular basis by the group
6-Evidence that your group is internationally recognized as outstanding in the discipline for a sustained and substantial period of time as demonstrated by evidence of your group's receipt of, or nomination for, significant international awards or prizes for outstanding achievement in the field, or evidence of at least three of the following:


A-Your group has performed and will perform as a starring or leading entertainment group in production or events which have a distinguished reputation as evidenced by critical reviews, advertisements, publicity releases, publications, contracts, or endorsements
B-Your group has achieved international recognition and acclaim for outstanding achievement in its field as evidenced by reviews in major newspapers, trade journals, magazines or other published material
C-Your group has performed and will perform services as a leading or starring group for organizations and establishments that have a distinguished reputation as evidenced by articles in newspapers, trade journals, publications, or testimonials
D-Your group has a record of major commercial or critically acclaimed successes, as evidenced by indicators such as ratings, box office receipts, record, cassette or video sales, and other achievements as reported in trade journals, major newspapers or other publications
E-Your group has received significant recognition for achievements from critics, organizations, government agencies or other recognized experts in the field
F-Your group has commanded and will command a high salary or other substantial remuneration for services comparable to others similarly situated in the field, as evidenced by contracts or other reliable evidence

Applying for a Visa at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate
Once the visa petition is approved, you can apply at a U.S. embassy or consulate. For more information on visa application processing and issuance fees, see the “Department of State, travel.state.gov” page.

Period of Stay/Extension of Stay

 

Initial Period of Stay

Extension of Stay

Time needed to complete the event, competition or performance, not to exceed 1 year

Increments of up to 1 year in order to continue or complete the event, competition or performance.

 

The Form I-129 is used to apply for a change of status, extension of stay, or change of employment.
For more information see the  "Extend Your Stay” and “Change my Status” pages.

Change of employer
You may change employers, but only after your new employer has filed a new Form I-129 with USCIS requesting permission to employ you and extend your stay. You may not commence employment with the new employer until the Form I-129 has been approved.

Family of P-1B Visa Holders
Your spouse and unmarried children under the age of 21 may obtain P-4 status. Your dependents may not engage in employment, but may attend school or college.

Essential Support Personnel
Essential Support Personnel who are an integral part of the performance of a P-1 entertainer(s) and who perform support services which cannot be readily performed by a U.S. worker, are eligible for P-1 classification. Support personnel include front office personnel, camera operators, lighting technicians and stage personnel.
The U.S. employer must file a separate Form I-129 for support personnel. The petition must include the following documents:

1-A consultation from an appropriate labor organization
2-A statement describing the support person’s prior and current essentially, critical skills and experience with the P-1 entertainer(s)
3-A copy of a written contract between the employer and the support person or a summary of the terms of the oral agreement under which the support person will be employed

P-2 Individual Performer or Part of a Group Entering to Perform Under a Reciprocal Exchange Program
The P-2 classification applies to you if you are coming temporarily to perform as an artist or entertainer, individually or as part of a group, who will perform under a reciprocal exchange program between an organization in the United States and an organization in another country.

Eligibility Criteria
You must be an artist entering the United States through a government recognized reciprocal exchange program. In addition, you must possess skills comparable to those of the United States artists and entertainers taking part in the program outside the United States.

Application Process
In order for you to qualify for a P-2 Visa, a sponsoring labor organization in the United States, or your U.S. employer must file Form I-129, Petition for a Non-Immigrant Worker. For more information about the Form, 129, see the  “Form 1-129, Petition for a Nonimmigrant Worker” page.
Please note that a petitioner who will be filing as an agent for multiple employers must establish that it is duly authorized to act as an agent.  The required conditions can be found in the memorandum “Requirements for Agents and Sponsors Filing as Petitioners for the O and P Visa Classifications”.

Supporting Documents

The Form I-129 must include the following documents:

1-Written consultation by an appropriate labor organization
2-Copy of the formal reciprocal exchange agreement between the sponsoring U.S. organization(s) and the organization(s) in a foreign country which will receive the United States artist or entertainer
3-Statement from the sponsoring organization describing the reciprocal exchange of United States artists or entertainers as it relates to the specific petition for which classification is sought
4-Evidence that you and the U.S. artist or entertainer subject to the reciprocal exchange agreement are artists with comparable skills and that the terms and conditions of employment are similar
5-Evidence that an appropriate labor organization in the United States was involved in negotiating, or has concurred with, the reciprocal exchange of U.S. and foreign artists or entertainers.

Note: If the events or performances will take place in multiple areas, an itinerary must be submitted. The itinerary must list the dates and locations of the events.

Applying for a Visa at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate
Once the visa petition is approved, you can apply at a U.S. embassy  or consulate.  For more information on visa application processing and issuance fees, see the  “Department of State, travel.state.gov”  page.
Period of Stay/Extension of Stay

 

Initial Period of Stay

Extension of Stay

Time needed to complete the event, competition or performance, not to exceed 1 year

Increments of up to 1 year in order to continue or complete the event, competition or performance.

 

Form I-129 is used to apply for a change of status, extension of stay or change of employment.
For more information see the “Extend my Stay” and “Change my Nonimmigrant Status” pages.

Change of Employer
You may change employers, but only after your new employer has filed a new Form I-129 with USCIS requesting permission to employ you and extend your stay. You may not commence employment with the new employer until the Form I-129 has been approved.

Family of P-2 Visa Holders
Your spouse and unmarried children under the age of 21 may obtain P-4 status. Your dependents may not engage in employment, but may attend school or college.

Essential Support Personnel
Essential support personnel who are an integral part of the performance of a P- 2 artist or entertainer and who perform support services that cannot be readily performed by a U.S. worker, are eligible for P-2 classification. Support personnel may include stagehands, trainers, or those persons having critical knowledge of the specific services to be performed.
The U.S. employer must file a separate Form I-129 for support personnel. The petition must include the following documents:

1-Consultation from an appropriate labor organization
2-Statement describing the support person’s prior and current essentially, critical skills and experience with the P-2 artist or entertainer
3-Copy of a written contract between the employer and the support person or a summary of the terms of the oral agreement under which the support person will be employed.

  
P-3 Artist or Entertainer Coming to Be Part of a Culturally Unique Program
The P-3 classification applies to you if you are coming temporarily to perform, teach or coach as artists or entertainers, individually or as part of a group, under a program that is culturally unique.
Eligibility Criteria
For a P-3 visa, you must be coming to the United States either individually or as a group for the purpose of developing, interpreting, representing, coaching, or teaching a unique or traditional ethnic, folk, cultural, musical, theatrical, or artistic performance or presentation. In addition, you must be coming to the United States to participate in a cultural event or events which will further the understanding or development of your art form. The program may be of a commercial or noncommercial nature.

Application Process
Your U.S. employer or sponsoring organization must submit Form I-129, Petition for a Non-Immigrant Worker.   For more information about the Form I-129, see the “Form 1-129, Petition for Nonimmigrant Worker” page.

Please note that a petitioner who will be filing as an agent for multiple employers must establish that it is duly authorized to act as an agent.  The required conditions can be found in the memorandum “Requirements for Agents and Sponsors Filing as Petitioners for the O and P Visa Classifications”.

Supporting Documents
Your Form I-129 must include the following documents:

1-Written consultation from an appropriate labor organization
2-A copy of the contract between the petitioner and the beneficiary or the summary of the terms of an oral agreement between the petitioner and the beneficiary
3-An explanation of the event and itinerary
4-Affidavits, testimonials or letters from recognized experts attesting to the authenticity of your or your group's skills in performing, presenting, coaching or teaching the unique and traditional art forms and giving the credentials of the expert including the basis of his or her knowledge of your or your group’s skills; OR documentation that your or your group’s performance is culturally unique as evidenced by reviews in newspapers, journals or other published materials.
5-Documentation that all of the performances or presentations will be culturally unique events

 

Note: If the events or performances will take place in multiple areas, an itinerary must be submitted. The itinerary must list the dates and locations of the events.
Period of Stay/Extension of Stay

 


Initial Period of Stay

Extension of Stay

Time needed to complete the event, activity or performance, not to exceed 1 year

Increments of up to 1 year in order to continue or complete the event, activity or performance.

 

The Form I-129 is used to apply for a change of status, extension of stay or change of employment.
For more information see the  “Extend my Stay” and “Change my Nonimmigrant Status”  pages.

Change of Employer
You may change employers, but only after your new employer has filed a new Form I-129 with USCIS requesting permission to employ you and extend your stay. You may not commence employment with the new employer until the Form I-129 has been approved.

Family of P-3 Visa Holders
Your spouse and unmarried children under the age of 21 may obtain P-4 status. Your dependents may not engage in employment, but may attend school or college.

Essential Support Personnel
Essential support personnel who are an integral part of the performance of a P- 3 artist or entertainer and who perform support services that cannot be readily performed by a U.S. worker, are eligible for P-3 classification. Support personnel may include coaches, scouts, trainers and other team officials and referees.
The U.S. employer must file a separate Form I-129 for support personnel.  The petition must include the following documents:

1-A consultation from an appropriate labor organization
2-A statement describing the support person’s prior and current essentially, critical skills and experience with the P-3 artist or entertainer
3-A copy of a written contract between the employer and the support person or a summary of the terms of the oral agreement under which the support person will be employed

The Law Offices of Prashanthi Reddy, Pllc has filed many successful  “P” petitions for world renowned actors, singers, musicians, performers and teachers. We are aware of the amount and kind of documentation required and are able to give an accurate opinion on which cases are likely to get approved and which may not be approved, based on prior experience.

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