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P: ENTERTAINERS & ATHLETES

The P1 entertainment visa is a non immigrant visa which allows foreign nationals who are internationally recognized athletes, artists and entertainers to enter into the U.S. for a specific event, competition or performance.

They should be brought for a U.S. employer or an international employer working through a U.S. agent. Importantly enough, individual athletes may be admitted to US as P-1 aliens, but not individual entertainers.

Two preliminary steps must be taken by the employer before an alien worker can obtain a P visa:

  1. obtaining an advisory opinion from an appropriate labor organization or show that an appropriate peer group, labor organization, or management organization does not exist; and
  2. obtaining an approval from USCIS of the petition for a nonimmigrant worker.

Types of P Visa

P-1 Visa for Athletes/Athletic Teams

Internationally recognized athlete, individually or as a part of a group or team coming to the U.S. to participate in a competition.

P-1 Entertainment Group (Visa for a Member of Entertainment Group)

The entertainment group must be coming to the U.S. to participate in entertainment events, and must have achieved international recognition for a substantial and sustained period (ordinarily for at least one year) and/or provide functions integral to the group’s performance. One year requirement can be waived under specific circumstances.

P-2 Artistic Exchange (Visa for Artist or Visa for Entertainers)

The P-2 classification applies to an alien coming temporarily to perform as an artist or entertainer individually or as part of a group, who will perform under a government recognized reciprocal exchange program.

P-3 Culturally Unique Artists (Visa for Artist or visa for Entertainers)

The P-3 classification applies to aliens coming temporarily to perform, teach or coach as artists or entertainers, individually or as part of a group, under a program that is culturally unique.

P-1, 2, or 3 (Accompanying Support Personnel)

This category applies to accompanying support personnel who are highly skilled aliens coming temporarily as an essential and integral part of the competition or performance of a P-1, P-2, or P-3.

The P visa holders are generally admitted according to the duration of a specific competition, event or performance. Applicants may be allowed to stay on P visa in the U.S. for up to five years with extensions not to exceed a total stay of ten years. The alien should be engaging in the same activity specified in the original petition where an additional time is required to complete the business.

Dependents (a spouse and unmarried children below 21 years) can accompany P-1, P-2, or P-3 applicant on a P-4 visa. They can not be employed in the U.S., but are authorized to engage in a full-time study.

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