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US O Visa for Artists and Athletes

The O-1 visa is a nonimmigrant visa that is designed for individuals with an extraordinary ability within the fields of sciences, arts, education, business, or athletics. This also applies to an individual who is able to exhibit previous record of extraordinary achievement in the television or motion picture industry. These achievements must be nationally or internationally recognized.

The O nonimmigrant visa particular subcategories, these include:

  • O-1A: Individuals with an extraordinary ability within the fields of sciences, arts, education, or athletics.
  • O-1B: Individuals with an extraordinary ability within the field of arts or an extraordinary achievement in the motion picture or television industry.
  • O-2: Individuals who help assist an O-1 athlete or artist in a specific event.
  • O-3: Individuals who are the children or spouses of O-1 or O-2 visa holders.

>Under the age of 21 years old, they will able eligible to apply for this visa

>Same period of stay as O-1 or O-2 visa holders

>They may be unable to work, however they will be able study full or part time under this subcategory


O-1 Visa

  • You must exhibit extraordinary ability within the fields listed above including extraordinary achievement in television or motion picture industry that is nationally or internationally recognized. You must also intend to work within your specialized expertise in the United States temporarily.
  • Applying for the O visa displays that you believe that you are one among many individuals that have that greatest amount of achievement or ability within the given field, and that you are able to use that ability to benefit in the United States.
  • Earning various degrees in your specialized field or any other kind of prominent achievement displays that you are a leading figure within your field, specifically the field of arts.

O-2 Visa

  • Your assistance toward the O-1 visa holder must be vital in their performance. You must also have knowledge and skill that is only obtained through the experiences of accompanying these O-1 individuals, it must not be simple general knowledge and skill that anyone is able to obtain without any prior experience. Your participation in coming to the United States must be integral and essential as though the O-1 visa holder will be unable to perform the same without your assistance.

-Period of Stay

  • The initial period of stay is three years
  • An extension of stay may be granted
    • Employer or agent must explain to the USCIS while it is crucial for you to extend your stay, file a form I-129, and make a copy of your I-194 along with your departure and arrival record.
    • If your spouse or children need to extend their stay, they must file a form I-539  

-Change in Employer/Employment

  • O-1 nonimmigrant visa holders that are looking to change their current employer must have their new employer file a form I-129 with USCIS.
  • If a petition was filed by an agent, then the new employer must instead file an amended petition. This petition must prove that they are your new employer and that you request an extension of stay in order to work towards this new employment opportunity.  

Seek legal advice from our office today as we are able to guide you with your specific case and decision regarding which visa and subcategory would be best suited for you.  

Attorney Ramona Kennedy cares about your case and will fight for you.

You can contact attorney Ramona Kennedy Law Offices (Kennedy Law LC) for an initial consultation and case evaluation. The first consultation is free of charge. 

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