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O-1 Visa: Individuals with Extraordinary Ability or Achievement

 

The Individuals with Extraordinary Ability or Achievement Visa, also known as the O-1 visa, is a temporary visa for persons with extraordinary ability in sciences, arts, education, business, or athletics and motion picture or TV production.


 

Overview:

 

  • Four types of O-1 visas:

 

  • O-1A for individuals with an extraordinary ability in the sciences, education, business, or athletics.

  • O-1B for individuals with an extraordinary ability in the arts or extraordinary achievement in motion picture or television industry.*

  • O-2 for individuals who will accompany an O-1, artist or athlete, to assist in a specific event or performance.  U.S. worker and which are essential to the successful performance of the O-1.

  • O-3 for individuals who are the spouse or children of O-1’s and O-2’s

 

*(For an O-1A, the O-2’s assistance must be an “integral part” of the O-1A’s activity. For an O-1B, the O-2’s assistance must be “essential” to the completion of the O-1B’s production. The O-2 worker has critical skills and experience with the O-1 that cannot be readily performed by a)

 

  • Spouse, children, and assistant(s) included. Your spouse, children, and/or assistants may be able to accompany you as well.

 

  • Three year temporary stay. This visa is initially granted for up to three years, but can be extended for one year at a time.

 

  • No limit on extensions. But visa must be for one year at a time.

 

Requirements:

 

1) Must demonstrate extraordinary ability by sustained national or international acclaim.*

 

2) Must be coming temporarily to the United States to continue work in the area of extraordinary ability.

 

3) To qualify for an O-1 visa in the motion picture or television industry, the beneficiary must demonstrate extraordinary achievement evidenced by a degree of skill and recognition significantly above that ordinarily encountered to the extent the person is recognized as outstanding, notable or leading in the motion picture and/or television field.

 

*Extraordinary ability meaning in the following fields:

 

  • Science, education, business or athletics means a level of expertise indicating that the person is one of the small percentage who has risen to the very top of the field of endeavor.

  • Arts means distinction.  Distinction means a high level of achievement in the field of the arts evidenced by a degree of skill and recognition substantially above that ordinarily encountered to the extent that a person described as prominent is renowned, leading, or well-known in the field of arts.

  • Motion picture or television industry means the beneficiary must demonstrate extraordinary achievement evidenced by a degree of skill and recognition significantly above that ordinarily encountered to the extent the person is recognized as outstanding, notable or leading in the motion picture and/or television field.

 

4) Your employment in the US must qualify as an “Event.”

 

5) Your petition must be filed by a US employer, US Agent, or foreign employer through a US Agent.

 

6) Must have an advisory opinion from a peer group, labor organization, or management organization.