Who is Eligible for O-1 Visas?

 

O-1 nonimmigrant visas are granted to those who can infuse U.S. industries with their extraordinary ability in business, athletics, science, arts, education, cinema or television and who have achieved international or national acclaim and recognition for their strong abilities in their applicable category.

As a candidate for the O-1 visa, you are in the top tier of your field and possess a level of expertise that has distinguished you from your colleagues. Your O-1 visa will act as temporary visa used for the purposes of allowing you to advance your work and experience in the U.S.

Rebecca I. Pathak

Contact an Immigration Attorney

Call us today at 818-843-1185, so that we can answer your questions, provide initial consultation on your immigration matter, assess how we can help you or can point you in the right direction as you take on this important and life-changing pursuit.

3500 W Olive Ave 3rd Fl Burbank, CA 91505

818-843-1185

If your work is in business, science, athletics or education, you would apply for the O-1A visa and must meet the following criteria:

1. You must have been distinguished with an internationally-renowned award such as the Nobel Prize

Or

2. You must show evidence of any three of these criteria:

  • Membership in associations that require the highest levels of achievement as assessed by national or international experts in your field

  • Major publications about you and your work in your field

  • Significant contributions in your field

  • You have written scholarly articles about your field for major publications or professional journals

  • You serve on a panel or work as an individual judge of the work of others in your field

  • You earn a significant salary for the work that you do

  • You play an essential role in distinguished organizations

  • You’ve received recognition by way of nationally or internationally renowned prizes or awards for work you have done in your field

 

Your petitioner may also provide additional evidence on your behalf that aligns with these criteria for assessing extraordinary ability.

If your work is in the arts, cinema or television you would apply for the O-1B visa and must meet the following criteria:

  1. You must have been distinguished with an award or nomination for internationally-renowned awards such as an Academy Award, Director’s Guild Award, Emmy, or Grammy.

 

Or

 

2.  You must show evidence of any three of these criteria:

  • You’ve received national or global recognition in critical reviews, publicity releases, publications, endorsements, contracts or advertisements

  • You have and will further perform as a leading or starring participant in events or productions of distinction

  • You play an essential role in distinguished organizations

  • You’ve achieved major recognition from established leaders in your field

  • You earn a significant salary for the work that you do

  • You have a record of major commercial or critical success

 

If you work in the arts (not television or cinema), your petitioner may also provide additional evidence on your behalf that aligns with these criteria for assessing extraordinary ability.

What Is Required from Employers/Petitioners Seeking O-1 Visas for Beneficiaries of Extraordinary Ability

Your employer or petitioner must submit:

  • Form I-129, Petition for Nonimmigrant Worker with the correct United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (UCSIS) office specified in form instructions

  • A written advisory opinion submitted by a collective peer group, such as labor organizations or an individual member of the group who is well versed in your field of expertise and your specific abilities

    • If there is clear evidence that there is no such peer group for your field, your application will be assessed on the basis of evidence provided therein

    • If you are in the arts field and are seeking readmission into the U.S. less than two years after you were admitted for similar work, this consultation may be waived

    • A written contract between you and your petitioner or a summary of the terms that were laid out in an oral agreement between you and your petitioner

    • A written itinerary of events and activities with specific dates that should establish why you seek admission in the U.S. for the period requested

To learn about the many varied requirements for agents and O-2 visas granted to those who play a crucial role and request to accompany athletes or artists, please consult with one of our experienced immigration attorneys.

Can Your Spouse and Children Accompany You in the U.S. During Your Employment?

 

Yes. Your spouse and children under the age of 21 are also eligible to apply for O-3 visas to accompany you during your stay in the U.S., but they will not be eligible to work. They can, however, enroll in educational programs.

Where to Begin?

 

As you go through this emotional and demanding process, it can make a world of difference to have specialized help. At Pathak and Feldman Law, serving Burbank, CA and the Los Angeles area, we’re here to provide caring, knowledgeable assistance from start to finish of your O-1, O-2 and O-3 visa petitions.

Call us at 818-843-1185 today to schedule a consultation!