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P Visas (Artists, Athletes and Entertainers)

 

Athletes, entertainers, artists and their essential support personnel may apply for P-1 visas.  Individual members of the entertainment industry are not eligible for the P-1 visa classification, but individual athletes are.  For members of the entertainment industry, the visa will be issued for a specific event only.  However, individual athletes may be admitted for five years and a team for a period of six months.

There are 2 types of P-1 Visa:

  • P-1A: Internationally recognized athlete; &
  • P-1B: Member of an internationally recognised entertainment group.

Spouses and unmarried children (under 21) are eligible for a P-4 Visa. Dependents may not engage in employment, but may attend school or college.

P-1A Visas

Where an individual or a member of a team is to perform at a specific athletic competition as an athlete, at an internationally recognised level of performance:

Individual Athletes

  • 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

  • To participate in team events;
  • 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.

Essential Support Personnel

  • An integral part of the performance of a P-1 athlete (team) and
  • Performs support services which cannot be readily performed by a U.S. worker
  • Support personnel may include coaches, scouts, trainers and other team officials and referees.

Length of Visa

  • Individual Athletes: The duration of the visa depends on the time needed to complete the event, competition, or performance. This cannot exceed 5 years. This may be extended for up to a further 5 years. Total stay is limited to 10 years.
  • Athletic Group: The duration of the visa depends on the time needed to complete the event, competition, or performance. This cannot exceed 1 year. This may be extended in increments of 1 year.
  • Essential Support Staff: The duration of the visa depends on the time needed to complete the event, competition, or performance. This cannot exceed 1 year. This can be extended for up to 5 years and total stay is limited to 10 years.

P-1B Visas

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

  • At least 75 percent of the members of the group must have had a substantial and sustained relationship with the group for at least one year;
  • The entertainment group must be internationally recognized;
  • A high level of achievement in a field evidenced by a degree of skill and recognition substantially above that ordinarily encountered is needed;
  • The reputation of the group, not the individual achievements of its members or the acclaim of a particular production, is essential.

Special provisions for certain Entertainment Groups 

Circus performers and essential circus personnel are exempt from the one year and the internationally recognized requirement. The circus need only be nationally recognised.

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.

Length of Visa

Time needed to complete the event, competition or performance, not to exceed 1 year. This may be extended in increments of up to 1 year.

P-2 Exchange Program for Artists and Entertainers

Artists and entertainers, either individuals or a group who will perform under a reciprocal exchange program between an organisation in the United States and an organisation in another country may be eligible for a P-2 Visa.

Eligibility

  • Must be a government recognised reciprocal exchange program; &
  • Must possess skills comparable to those of the United States artists and entertainers taking part in the program outside the United States.

Essential Support Personnel

Must be 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.

Length of Visa

Time needed to complete the event, competition or performance, not to exceed 1 year. The visa may be extended in increments of up to1 year.

Spouses and Unmarried Children (Under 21)

Are eligible for a P-4 Visa. Dependents may not engage in employment, but may attend school or college.

P-3 For Artists and Entertainers Performing, Teaching, or Coaching

Artists and entertainers, either individuals or a group who are to perform, teach, or coach in the United States under a program that is culturally unique may apply for P-3 visas.

Eligibility

  • 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;
  • 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.

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 a P-3 visa. Support personnel may include coaches, scouts, trainers and other team officials and referees.

Spouses and Unmarried Children (under 21)

May obtain a P-4 Visa. They may not engage in employment, but may attend school or college.

Length of Visa

Time needed to complete the event, activity or performance, not to exceed 1 year. This may be extended in 1 year increments.

Free inquiry

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