O-1 Visa: Individuals with Extraordinary Ability or Achievement

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United States
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About

The O-1 Non-immigrant visa is for the individual who possesses extraordinary ability in the sciences, arts, education, business, or athletics, or who has a demonstrated record of extraordinary achievement in the motion picture or television industry and has been recognized nationally or internationally for those achievements

The O Non-immigrant classification is commonly referred to as:

  • O-1 A: individuals with an extraordinary ability in the sciences, education, business, or athletics (not including the arts, motion pictures, or television industry).
  • O-1 B: individuals with an extraordinary ability in the arts or extraordinary achievement in the motion picture or television industry.
  • O-2: individuals who will accompany an O-1, artist or athlete, to assist in a specific event or performance. For an O-1 A, the O-2’s assistance must be an “integral part” of the O-1 A’s activity. For an O-1 B, the O-2’s assistance must be “essential” to the completion of the O-1 B’s production. The O-2 worker has critical skills and experience with the O-1 that cannot be readily performed by a U.S. worker and which are essential to the successful performance of the O-1.
  • O-3: individuals who are the spouse or children of O-1’s and O-2’s.

Application Process O-1 Visa

The petitioner should file Form I-129, Petition for Nonimmigrant Worker, (see Form I-129, Petition for Nonimmigrant Worker) with the USCIS office listed on the form instructions. The petition may not be filed more than one year before the actual need for the alien's services. To avoid delays, Form I-129 should be filed at least 45 days before the date of employment.

The petitioner must submit Form I-129, Petition for Nonimmigrant Worker, and the following documentary evidence.

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DURATION

36 months max.

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CITIZENSHIP

60 Month(s)

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FEES

190

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P. RESIDENCY

36 Month(s)

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COMPLEXITY

Low

Eligibility Requirements

7 Eligibility Requirements for O-1 Visa: Individuals with Extraordinary Ability or Achievement

  • You must demonstrate extraordinary ability by sustained national or international acclaim.
  • You must be coming temporarily to the United States to continue work in the area of extraordinary ability.
  • Extraordinary ability in the fields of science, education, business, or athletics means a level of expertise indicating that the person is one of the small percentages who has risen to the very top of the field of endeavor.
  • Extraordinary ability in the field of arts means distinction. Distinction means a high level of achievement in the field of the arts evidenced by a degree of skill and recognition substantially above that ordinarily encountered to the extent that a person described as prominent is renowned, leading, or well-known in the field of arts.
  • Or, you must demonstrate extraordinary achievement evidenced by a degree of skill and recognition significantly above that ordinarily encountered.
  • You need a passport valid for at least 6 months.
  • You need to pay visa fee.

Document Requirements

7 Document Required for O-1 Visa: Individuals with Extraordinary Ability or Achievement

  • Fill out Form DS-160 online.
  • Original and copies of valid passport.
  • A photograph according to the Photo Requirements.
  • The receipts that you have paid all fees.
  • Proof that you have a job in the U.S (such as a letter from your employer, a contract).
  • Proof that you have extraordinary abilities (this should be the same proof that your employer has handed into USCIS).
  • If you are planning to bring your family, you must submit proof of your relationship to them (marriage certificate for your spouse and birth certificates for your children).

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