Through an O-visa, individuals with extraordinary abilities or achievements may be eligible to get authorization to live and work in the United States. Indeed, O-1 visas are the primary employment immigration option used by people in the entertainment industry. As explained by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS), there are two types of O-1 visas: O-1A and O-1B. Here, our Los Angeles O-1 visa attorney highlights four things you need to know if you are considering applying for an entertainment visa in Southern California.
1. You Must Get Support from an American Sponsor
Similar to other non-immigrant employment visas, applicants for an O-1 visa need an American-based sponsor. The sponsor (employer) must petition on behalf of the immigrant. In the entertainment industry, sponsors may include employers, companies, agents or managers. Regardless of who is sponsoring the application, immigrants should carefully organize all relevant documents, records, and supporting information.
2. Present Proof of Extraordinary Ability or Achievement
To obtain an entertainment visa, applicants must present proof of extraordinary ability or achievement. Ultimately, O-1 visas are reserved for a relatively small number of qualified individuals who have unique talents in the industry. If you are applying for an O-1 entertainment visa, it is imperative that you are able to present comprehensive documentation that helps to establish your achievements and accolades.
3. Prepare for the Consultation
In many cases, O-1 visa applicants will be required to sit for a consultation with their “peer group.” A peer group is defined as an organization that is suited to assess the applicant’s professional merits. Depending on the nature of your path in the entertainment industry, a peer group may be a labor organization or another official expert in the field. With a union or peer group consultation letter in support of your qualifications, it will be easier to get an O-1 visa approved.
4. A Spouse and Unmarried Children May Be Eligible for an O-3 Visa
If you are approved for an O-1A or O-1B visa, you can also bring your spouse and unmarried children who are under the age of 21 with you to the United States. To get admission into the country, these immediate family members must apply for an O-3 visa. An O-3 visa will have the same duration as the related O-1 visa—meaning these visas are initially valid for up to three years, and subject to an extension if criteria are met.
Consult With Our Los Angeles O-1 Visa Lawyer for Immediate Assistance
At the Law Office of Joshua L. Goldstein, PC, our Southern California entertainment visa lawyers are experienced advocates for immigrant rights. If you or your family member is preparing to apply for an O-1 visa, we are here to help. Our legal team can also help you apply for an O-3 visa for family members. Call us now for an initial consultation. With an office in Los Angeles, we serve communities throughout the region, including in Beverly Hills, Hollywood, and Anaheim.