12.05.2015 - 12:35

O-1 Extraordinary Ability Visa in the Fields of Science, Education, Business or Athletics:

The O-1 Extraordinary Ability visa is issued for individuals who have “extraordinary ability” in the fields of arts, science, education, business or athletics which can be documented by national and / or international commendation for accomplishments in their field. The applicant must be coming to the U.S. to provided services in their field of extraordinary ability.

In order to be eligible to apply for an O-1 visa based on extraordinary ability in the fields of science, education, business, or athletics, the applicant must have received a major, internationally recognized award / prize for their excellence in the field.

Additionally, the applicant must have a minimum of at least three to five of the following conditions must be met:

  • The applicant must possess a nationally and / or internationally recognized prize / award for their excellence in the field.
  • The applicant must be a member of an association(s) in their field of excellence, which require outstanding achievements from their members.
  • The applicant must have material published about themselves relating to work they performed in their field of extraordinary ability. This material must be published through channels such as professional or major trade publications, or major media, and must include the title, date and author.
  • The applicant must have participated on a panel as a judge of the work of others in the same or related field of extraordinary ability. Alternatively, the applicant can individually be the judge of the work of others in the same or related field of extraordinary ability.
  • The applicant must have contributed significant scientific, scholarly, or business related material.
  • The applicant must have written scholarly articles in professional journals or other major media.
  • The applicant must be currently or previously employed by a distinguished organization and / or establishment in a critical or essential role.
  • The applicant must be able to prove through contracts or other reliable documentation that they received or will receive high remuneration for their services.

In order to apply for an O-1 visa, the applicant’s petitioner is required to obtain a “Peer Consultation” letter from a peer group, organization, or labor / management association in the U.S. which has expertise in the applicant’s field of extraordinary ability. This letter must refer to the applicant’s qualifications, the nature of the work to be performed and the organization’s credibility in making these statements.

The O-1 visa is generally issued for a maximum period of 3 years, and can be extended in one year increments.

Spouses and children under the age of 21 are eligible to accompany the O-1 holder to the U.S. for the duration of the O-1 visa under a separate O-2 visa category. Spouses and children are not eligible for employment in the U.S. under the O-2 visa category.

O-1 Extraordinary Ability Visa in the Field of Arts:

The O-1 Extraordinary Ability visa is issued for individuals who have “extraordinary ability” in the fields of arts, science, education, business or athletics which can be documented by national and / or international commendation for accomplishments in their field. The applicant must be coming to the U.S. to provided services in their field of extraordinary ability.

In order to be eligible to apply for an O-1 visa based on extraordinary ability in the arts, the applicant must have received or been nominated for an award / prize of national and / or international acclaim in their field of extraordinary ability. Examples of such awards would be an Academy Award, an Emmy, or a Grammy.

Additionally, the applicant must have a minimum of at least three to five of the following conditions:

  • The applicant must have participated in a production or event of distinguished reputation in a lead or starring role. This participation must be documentable through evidence such as critical reviews, advertisements, publicity releases, contracts, and / or endorsements.
  • The applicant must have received national and / or international recognition for their achievements. This recognition must be in the form of critical reviews or other published materials which were either written about or written by the applicant in publications such as major newspapers, trade journals and / or magazines.
  • The applicant must have performed for an organization and / or establishment of distinguished reputation in a lead, starring, or critical role. This performance must be documentable through evidence such as newspaper articles, trade journals, publications, and / or testimonials.
  • The applicant must have a record of major success evidenced by indicators such as title, rating, box office records, motion picture or television ratings, and / or achievements reported in publications such as major newspapers, trade journals.
  • Organizations, critics, government agencies or other experts in the field of extraordinary ability must have provided the applicant with significant recognition for their achievements. This recognition must provide the testifier’s authority, expertise and knowledge of the applicant’s accomplishments.
  • The applicant must be able to prove through contracts or other reliable documentation that they received or will receive high remuneration for their services.
  • Other comparable evidence must be provided if the above mentioned standards do not apply to the applicant’s field of extraordinary ability. This alternative criterion must be indicated and sufficient documentation must also be provided to establish the applicant’s eligibility.

In order to apply for an O-1 visa, the applicant’s petitioner is required to obtain a “Peer Consultation” letter from a peer group, organization, or labor / management association in the U.S. which has expertise in the applicant’s field of extraordinary ability. This letter must refer to the applicant’s qualifications, the nature of the work to be performed and the organization’s credibility in making these statements.

The O-1 visa is generally issued for a maximum period of 3 years, and can be extended in one year increments.

Spouses and children under the age of 21 are eligible to accompany the O-1 holder to the U.S. for the duration of the O-1 visa under a separate O-2 visa category. Spouses and children are not eligible for employment in the U.S. under the O-2 visa category.