Strak Immigration Law

O and P Temporary Work Visas

Who qualifies?

For an O, a foreign person must demonstrate extraordinary ability in the sciences, arts , education, business or athletics or extraordinary achievement in Film or television. This ability or achievement is proven by “sustained national or international” acclaim.  The person must be coming to the US to work in his field of expertise. Critical assistants and dependents may also be issued O visas.

For a P, a foreign person must be coming temporarily to the US to do one of the following:

  • perform alone or as part of a team in athletic competition with internationally recognized level of performance;
  • perform with an internationally recognized entertainment group with which the performer or necessary assistant has had a one year or more relationship;
  • perform in a reciprocal exchange program for artists and entertainers; or
  • perform, teach or coach as an individual or part of a group in a culturally unique program. Dependents of P visa holders may also hold a P visa.

Employer obligations

The sponsoring employer or agent must file a petition within the US at the appropriate  regional  service center of the Citizenship and Immigration Service. Accompanying documentation proves the individual’s qualifications for his visa. Normally, the employer must seek a consultation from a union or  peer group.

How long can an O or P stay in the United States?

An O visa petition may be granted for up to three years at a time, and extended, depending on the time necessary to complete the activities.  The P may be granted for up to 5 years, for a total of no more than 10 years.