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 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 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?
To qualify for the P-1 Visa in the United States, you must be an internationally recognized athlete or entertainer.
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:
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 to qualify for this visa.
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 have earned a significant amount of money
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 an internationally recognized individual or team athletes and members of the entertainment industry to visit the US.
The P-1 has two categories, the P-1A and the P-1B. The 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.
Requirements to Obtain the P-1A and P-1B
A team or entertainment group must consist of at least 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 team, athletes or entertainment group must be internationally recognized.
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.
What is the P-2 Visa?
The P-2 visa is for individuals or groups who would like 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 must possess skills comparable to those of US artists and entertainers taking part in the program outside the United States.
The difference between the P-1 and P-2 visa is that P-1 visa holders must have achieved international recognition for their accomplishments while P-2 visa holders do not need to be internationally known for their talents.
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 filling in Form 1-129. The individual or group who may be granted the P-2 visa is not permitted to begin the process.
The US employer must submit supporting documents along with Form 1-129, which should be confirmed with the United States Citizenship Immigration Services.
What is the Processing Time for the P-1 and P-2 Visa Applications?
Processing times for the P-1 visa, including both 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
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 ten most common here:
- Current and or past immigration status and history in the US or abroad, including overstaying and unauthorized employment
- Insufficient funds to support themselves during their stay
- Incorrect or incomplete petition
- Insufficient supporting evidence
- Conflicts with travel documentation
- Health concerns
- Suspicion of malicious intent
- Problems with a background check
- Criminal history/Being convicted of a crime/Suspected or known ties to terrorism
- Material Misrepresentation