The P visa is a visa option for internationally recognized artists, entertainers, and some athletes. For athletes, this visa is appropriate for an individual who is coming to the U.S. temporarily to perform at a specific athletic competition, individually or as part of a group or team, at an internationally recognized level of performance. For entertainers, this visa would be an option for individuals who are coming to the United States as part of a group that has been recognized internationally as outstanding for a substantial period of time. Each member of the group must have been with the group for at least one year (with certain exceptions), and be entering the United States exclusively to perform with that group. The P-1 visa status is granted on the basis of the group’s reputation, rather than on that of the individual artist. For more information on the P-1 visa, visit USCIS's website. Athletes with "extraordinary ability" may also qualify for an O-1A visa; for more information about the O-1A visa for athletes, visit the Grossman Law, LLC page on O-1A visas. Individual artists and entertainers with "extraordinary ability" may also qualify for an O-1B visa; for more information about the O-1B visa for extraordinary artists and entertainers, visit the Grossman Law, LLC page on O-1B visas.
P-2 visas are reserved for artists and entertainers who perform individually or with a group pursuant to a reciprocal exchange program between United States and foreign organizations. The exchanges must be similar in terms of caliber of artists and terms and conditions of employment. For more information on the P-2 visa visit USCIS's website.
P-3 visas are granted to individual or group artists who are considered “culturally unique” and who are coming to the United States to express a culturally unique art form. Evidence required to apply for the P-3 visa includes: testimonials from recognized experts and published materials attesting to the authenticity of skill and history of performing the culturally unique art form. Evidence must also be provided that the individuals or groups are coming to present "culturally unique" performances in the U.S. Importantly, "culturally unique" means "a style of artistic expression, methodology, or medium which is unique to a particular country, nation, society, class, ethnicity, religion, tribe or other group of persons." For more on the P-3 visa visit USCIS's website.
Additionally, all P categories allow for “essential support personnel” who are considered highly skilled and integral to the performance. P visas are granted for the period of time needed to complete the event or performance. P visa petitions are made on form I-129 and submitted by a U.S. petitioner to one of the USCIS regional service centers. Upon approval, the foreign national must apply in person at a U.S. Consulate in their home country. Once the visa issues, the individual may enter the United States to begin working.
To schedule a consultation with Grossman Law to discuss whether a P-visa is appropriate for you, call our office at (240) 403-0913 or email us.