P Visas for the US » P-1A, P-1B, and P-2 for Athletes, Entertainment Groups and Artists

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Have you achieved international success as an athlete or an entertainer? If you are an athlete or member of an athletic team that has achieved international recognition and will be competing in the United States, you may be eligible for the P-1A visa.

If you are part of an international entertainment group that will be performing in the US, you may qualify for the P-1B visa.

If you are an artist or an entertainer who wants to participate in an exchange program involving a US employer and your foreign employer, you may qualify for the P-2 visa.

We will help you get on track to find the best path to temporary immigration to the US.

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Who Qualifies or is Eligible for the P-1 Visa in the United States?

Because both athletes and entertainers are covered by this visa, the P-1 visa is broken down into two different P-1 Visas: P-1A and P-1B. Individuals and family members who plan to visit the US temporarily in order to compete or perform may qualify for either the P-1A or the P-1B visa.

Eligibility requirements are as follows:

Back to the Table of Contents. 

P-1A - Internationally Recognized Athlete 

Athletes must have been a part of and participated in a US professional sports league, US college sports, have received either a national or international award, and must have participated in either a national or international sports competition or event. Back to the Table of Contents. 

P-1B - Member of Internationally Recognized Entertainment Group (also known as P-1B Petitions: Group Performers - Artists From Abroad) 

The P-1B is applicable to performers who have achieved:

  • Success according to the number of records sold
  • Notoriety from acting in a successful film or television show
  • Recognition from critics or other experts in their field
  • Acknowledgment in journals or newspapers
  • Success and earned a significant amount of money

Back to the Table of Contents. 

What is the P-1 Visa? 

The P-1 visa (also known as P-1 Status for Internationally Recognized Athletes and Entertainment Groups) is a temporary, non-immigrant visa that allows internationally recognized individual or team athletes, along with, members of the entertainment industry to visit the US.

The P-1 has two categories, the P-1A and the P-1B. P-1A allows individuals and teams to compete, perform, promote themselves, and participate in athletics while the P-1B allows internationally recognized entertainers to perform in the US. Back to the Table of Contents. 

Requirements to Obtain the P-1A and P-1B 

A team or entertainment group must consist of two or more members.

The group must have been formed at least one year ago and 75% of the team members/entertainers must have been on the team/group for at least one year.

The athletic teams, athletes or entertainment group must be internationally recognized. Back to the Table of Contents. 

Who Qualifies or is Eligible for the P-2 Visa in the United States?

Individuals and groups of people who have achieved success as an artist or entertainer may qualify for the temporary, non-immigrant P-2 visa. You must be as skilled as the artist or entertainer participating in the exchange outside of the US. Back to the Table of Contents. 

What is the P-2 Visa? 

The P-2 is for individuals or groups to enter the United States in a reciprocal exchange program in order to work temporarily as an artist or entertainer for no longer than one year.

If you are a P-2 visa holder you will be working for a US employer and you must possess skills comparable to those of the US artists and entertainers taking part in the program outside the United States.

The difference between the P-1 and P-2 is that P-1 visa holders must have achieved international recognition for their accomplishments and P-2 visa holders do not need to be internationally known for their talents. Back to the Table of Contents. 

What is the Application Process for the P-2?

The US employer who is participating in the reciprocal exchange program must begin the application process by filing a Form 1-129. The individual or group who may be granted the P-2 is not permitted to begin the process.

The US employer must submit supporting documents along with the Form 1-129, which should be confirmed with the United States Citizenship Immigration Services. Back to the Table of Contents. 

What is the Processing Time for the P-1 and P-2 Visa Applications?

Processing times for the P-1, including the P-1A and P-1B, as well as the P-2 visas vary depending on several factors:

  • The office or service center responsible for processing the file
  • The type of non-immigrant visa
  • P-1, P-2 visa interview wait times (if applicable)
  • Whether the applicant can qualify for an expedited interview appointment
  • Whether Expedited processing is available
  • Whether Premium Processing is available
  • Providing insufficient or incomplete documents can lead to delays in processing and even denials

Back to the Table of Contents. 

Top 10 Reasons for Refusal of the P-1 and P-2 Applications

While there are many reasons why your P-1 or P-2 visa application could be refused, we have listed the top ten most common ones here:

  1. Current and or past immigration status and history for the US or abroad, including overstaying and unauthorized employment
  2. Insufficient funds to support themselves during their stay
  3. Incorrect or incomplete petition
  4. Insufficient supporting evidence
  5. Conflicts with travel documentation
  6. Health concerns
  7. Suspicious of malicious intent
  8. Problems with background check
  9. Criminal history/Being convicted of a crime/Suspected or known ties to terrorism
  10. Material Misrepresentation

Back to the Table of Contents. 

The P-1 Visa » Other FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) 

Can a P-1 visa holder get a green card? 

Yes, P-1 visa holders can apply for a green card in order to live and work permanently in the United States. Back to the Table of Contents. 

Can my spouse enter the US with me on a P-1 visa? 

A spouse of a P-1 holder and their unmarried children under 21 years old may accompany the P-1 holder if they apply for and are successfully granted a P-4 visa.

The spouse applying for the P-4 must either apply at the same time as the P-1 or after the P-1 has been granted their visa. Back to the Table of Contents. 

The P-2 Visa » Other FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions) 

Can I extend my stay on a P-2 artist exchange visa? 

Yes, you can extend your stay on a one-year basis if you apply and qualify for an extension of stay for the P-2. Back to the Table of Contents. 

Can I study on a P-2 work visa? 

Yes, on a P-2 visa, you may study part-time. Back to the Table of Contents. 

Are there any travel restrictions on P-2 visa? 

No, you are permitted to travel in and out of the US as long as your visa remains valid. Back to the Table of Contents. 

Why Contact My Visa Source for an Assessment? 

Congratulations on taking your first step toward temporarily working as an internationally recognized athlete, entertainer or artist and entertainers participating in an exchange program in the United States.

The more research you do on the immigration process, the more you will learn about your specific situation and how we can help you navigate the P-1 and P-2 visa application processes.

Lawyers at My Visa Source dedicate themselves to your immigration case, providing legal representation tailored to your personal situation.

Our expertise focuses on immigration and visa programs for the United States and Canada, including global immigration.

Partnering with an award-winning immigration team greatly increases the likelihood of achieving your specific immigration or visa goals.

Begin Your P-1 or P-2 Temporary Work Visa Today! 

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We have a dedicated team of licensed professionals standing by, ready to answer your immigration and visa questions.

Immigration is a complex process that requires strong legal strategy, precise paperwork and perfect attention to detail, reducing the risk of wasted time, money or permanent rejection.

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