P Visa for Athletes and Entertainers:

 

The P visa is a temporary work visa available to aliens who perform in athletics or the entertainment industry. Unlike the O visa, aliens who apply for a P visa are not required to meet the "extraordinary ability" requirement. Too, the wide range of P visa categories provides several opportunities for those in the entertainment industry or in athletics to come to the US to work. The P visa is divided into six categories:
         

  • the P-1A visa for a foreign national coming temporarily to perform at a specific athletic competition as an individual or as part of a team participating at an internationally recognized level of performance;
  • the P-1B visa for an alien entertainer, coming temporarily to perform as a member of a foreign-based entertainment group that has been recognized internationally as outstanding in the discipline for a significant period of time and who has sustained a relationship (usually for one year) with the group;
  • the P-2 visa for an alien coming temporarily to perform as an artist or entertainer, individually or as part of a group, under a reciprocal exchange program between an organization in the U.S. and an organization in another country;
  • the P-3 visa for an alien who is coming temporarily to perform, teach, or coach, individually or as part of a group, in the arts or entertainment fields in a program that is culturally unique; and
  •  P-1S, P-2S, or P-3S for essential support personnel who are highly skilled aliens coming temporarily as an essential and integral part of the competition or performance of a principal P-1, P-2, or P-3 or because they perform support services that are essential to the successful performance of the P-1, P-2, or P-3.
  • P-4s for spouses and minor children of P visa holders

P-1A Visa:

A P-1A visa application must include the following:

 

  • a written consultation with an appropriate labor organization in the alien's field;
  • a copy of the contract with a major sports league or team or contract in an individual sport commensurate with national or international recognition in the sport, if such contracts are normally utilized in the sport; and
  • evidence of at least two of the following:

     1) substantial participation in a prior season with a major U.S. 
     sports league;

          2) participation in international competitions with a national team;
          3) substantial participation in a prior season for a U.S. university 
          or college
intercollegiate competition;

          4) a written statement from an official of a major U.S. sports league
          or official of the governing body for a sport that details how the alien or
          team
is internationally recognized   

          5) that the individual or team is ranked if the sport has international    
          rankings
          6) that the alien or team has received a significant honor or award 
          in the sport 


P-1B Visa:


A P-1B visa must include the following

 

  • a written consultation from an appropriate labor organization in the alien's field;
  • evidence that the alien or group is internationally recognized within the discipline, as demonstrated by the submission of evidence of the group's receipt or nomination for significant international awards or prizes for outstanding achievement; or
  • evidence of at least three of the following:
    1) the alien or group has performed or will perform as a starring or leading group in productions or events with a distinguished reputation;
    2) the alien or group has achieved international recognition and acclaim for outstanding achievement in the field;
    3) the alien or group has a record of major commercial or critically acclaimed success;
    4) the alien or group has achieved significant recognition for achievement from critics, organizations, government agencies or other recognized experts in the field; or
    5) the alien or group commands a high salary or other substantial remuneration for services, compared to others similarly situated in the field.

By filing a P-1 visa application for a group, the petitioner must certify that the group has been established and performing regularly for a period of at least one year and that at least 75% of the members of the group have been performing with the group for at least one year. The one-year requirement does not apply to circus groups coming to perform with nationally recognized circuses. (Note: there are certain exceptions to the international recognition requirement and the one-year relationship requirement for which waivers can be requested).

P-2 Visa:

A P-2 visa application must be filed by the sponsoring organization or U.S. employer and must include the following:

  • a written consultation from an appropriate labor organization;
  • a copy of the reciprocal exchange program;
  • a statement from the sponsoring organization describing the reciprocal agreement as it relates to the petition;
  • evidence that the alien and the U.S. artist or group have comparable skills and that the terms of employment are similar; and
  • evidence that an appropriate labor organization in the U.S. was involved in negotiating or concurred with the exchange.

P-3 Visa:

A P-3 visa application must include the following:

  • a written consultation from an appropriate labor organization;
  • evidence that all performances will be culturally unique and either:
    1) affidavits, testimonials, or letters from recognized experts attesting to the authenticity of the alien's or group's skills in presenting, coaching, or teaching art forms or
    2) documentation that the performance of the alien or group is culturally unique as evidenced by actual reviews in newspapers, journals, or other published material

Essential support personnel:

In addition to being filed in conjunction with the P-1, P-2, or P-3 petition, a P-1, P-2, or P-3 visa application must include the following:

         a written consultation from an appropriate labor organization;

         a statement describing the alien's critical skills and prior experience with the P-1, P-2, or P-3 visa;

         statements or affidavits from persons with first-hand knowledge that the alien has substantial experience performing the critical skills and essential support services for the principal P-1, P-2, or P-3; and

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


 


The Law Office of Julia Lamanna
                    tel:  212-844-9668

305 Broadway 7th Floor, New York NY 10007                      fax: 212-844-9864


                                     visa@jlamannalaw.com

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