B-1 Business Visitor Visa
B-2 Tourist Visa
F-1 Student Visa
J-1 Exchange Visitor Visa
L Intracompany Transferee Visa
Extraordinary Ability O Visa
Nonimmigrant (Temporary) Visas
P Visa -1A: Internationally Recognized Athlete
The P Visa -1 classification is available to an alien who is coming to the U.S. temporarily to perform at a specific athletic competition as an athlete, individually or as part of a group or team, at an internationally recognized level of performance. If travelling to the United States as an individual, then the athlete must be internationally recognized to have obtained a high level achievement. This must be evidenced by a degree of skill and recognition substantially above that ordinarily encountered so that the athlete is renowned, leading or well-known in more than one country.
If the alien will be travelling as a part of an athletic team to participate in team events, then that team must have achieved significant international recognition in the sport. In addition, the event in which the team is participating must be distinguished and require the participation of athletic teams of international recognition. Essential support staff for either an individual or the team may also apply for a P Visa – 1A visa.
Certain minor league and/or amateur athletes may be eligible to come to the United States on a P-1 visa as long as they meet certain requirements. The petitioner must be able to demonstrate that: (1) the coach and/or athletes are a part of an international league or association of 14 or more amateur sports teams; (2) the foreign league is operating at the highest level of amateur performance in the foreign country; (3) the participation in the foreign league renders the players ineligible for scholarship or amateur athletics under the NCAA; and (4) a significant number of players who play in the foreign leagues are drafted by major league or minor league affiliates in the United States.
Family of P Visa – 1A visa holders may obtain P Visa – 4 status in the United States. They may not engage in employment, but may attend school or college.
P Visa – 1B: Member of an Internationally Recognized Entertainment Group
The P Visa – 1B classification is available to an alien who is coming to the United States temporarily 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.
In order to qualify, the entertainment group must have been established and performing for at least one year. In the case of a solo artist or entertainer who traditionally performs with backup singers, the act can be classified as a group as long as a minimum of 75% of the members of the entertainment group must have had a substantial and sustained relationship with the group for at least one year. If they do not meet the 75% rule, however, the solo artist must qualify for an O-1 visa and the musicians as O-2s.
The individual alien’s reputation is not as important for P Visa – 1B, as what really matters is the reputation of the group overall. The entertainment group must be internationally recognized, with a high level of achievement in their field evidenced by a degree of skill and recognition substantially above that ordinarily encountered.
Under U.S. Immigration law, certain groups are exempt from the one-year group membership requirement. Circuses, for example, do not have to meet this requirement, nor do they have to meet the international recognition requirement. The circus need only show that they have been recognized nationally as outstanding for a sustained period of time.
P Visa – 2: Individual Performer or Part of a Group Entering to Perform Under a Reciprocal Exchange Program
The P Visa – 2 classification applies to an alien who is coming temporarily to perform as an artist or entertainer, individually or as part of a group, who will perform under a reciprocal exchange program between an organization in the United States and an organization in another country. An example of this reciprocal interaction could include a talent management organization and an organization in one or more foreign states that provides for the temporary exchange of artists and entertainers, or a group of artists and entertainers.
In order to qualify for a P Visa – 2 visa, the exchange of artists must be similar in terms of caliber of artists and entertainers, terms and conditions of employment (such as length of employment and number of individuals involved in the exchange). Additionally, aliens who qualify as essential support personnel may be granted P Visa – 2 classification so that they may accompany the artist or entertainer.
P Visa – 3: Artist or Entertainer Coming to be Part of a Culturally Unique Program
The P Visa – 3 classification is designated for individual or group artists and/or entertainers who wish to come to the United States for the purpose of developing, interpreting, representing, coaching, or teaching a unique or traditional ethnic, folk, cultural, musical, theatrical, or artistic performance or presentation. While these programs may be either commercial or non-commercial in nature, they must serve to further the understanding or development of the alien’s art form.
Additionally, aliens who qualify as essential support personnel may be accorded P-3 classification to accompany the artist or entertainer.
Examples of P Visa – 3 visa holders include Mexican Mariachi bands, Irish Dance, Kenyan Drums, Indian classical dance, etc.