If you’re an artist or entertainer who would like to bring your talents to the United States, then an O visa or P visa is likely for you. The type of visa that’s right for you depends greatly on your purpose for coming.
The two main types of visas that enable artists and entertainers to come to the U.S. are O and P. Each has its own requirements and is only available to specific people. Both are nonimmigrant visas, which means that neither is a direct path to a green card. If lawful permanent residence is your goal, schedule a consultation and let’s discuss your options further.
Individuals with extraordinary ability may be eligible for the O nonimmigrant visa. For artists and entertainers, specifically, the appropriate visa is the O-1B. To apply for an O-1B visa, a U.S. employer or agent, or a foreign employer through a U.S. agent, must file the appropriate form on your behalf.
The petitioner must also provide evidence that demonstrates your extraordinary ability in the arts or motion picture industry and meets the U.S. government’s rigorous requirements. If you are successful in acquiring an O visa, you may be able to stay in the United States to perform for up to three years. In the event you need additional time, you may be able to extend your stay.
Don’t have an agent or U.S. employer? Schedule an appointment and let’s discuss further options for you.
If you have a spouse and children under the age of 21, they may be able to apply for their own visas that match your period of stay. Your support staff, such as managers may also be eligible for visas based on your receipt of the O-1B.
There are three main types of P visas for artists and entertainers: P-1B visas, P-2 visas, and P-3 visas.
Let’s break it down a bit.
- P-1B is the visa for Members of an Internationally Recognized Entertainment Group
- P-2 is the visa for Individual Performers or Part of a Group entering to Perform Under a Reciprocal Exchange Program
- P-3 is the visa for Artists or Entertainers Coming to Be Part of a Culturally Unique Program
To apply, A U.S. employer, U.S. sponsoring organization, U.S. agent or foreign employer through a U.S. agent must submit the appropriate paperwork to the U.S. government. The application packet must include certain documents, including a written consultation from an appropriate labor organization and evidence that the group or artist is internationally recognized.
Artists and Entertainers may stay in the U.S. on a P-3 visa for as long as it takes to complete the event, activity or performance, as long as it’s complete in one year or less. You can also extend your visa in increments of one year if necessary.
Generally speaking, your spouse and unmarried children under the age of 21 are eligible to apply for a visa based on your the P-3 applicant’s approval. Spouses and children may not work but can attend school.
Essential support personnel who are necessary for P visa entertainer’s performance may be eligible for the same classification and may also apply to accompany the P visa entertainer.