O-1 Visa: Individuals with Extraordinary Ability or Achievement
The Individuals with Extraordinary Ability or Achievement Visa, also known as the O-1 visa, is a temporary visa for persons with extraordinary ability in sciences, arts, education, business, or athletics and motion picture or TV production.
Four types of O-1 visas:
- O-1A for individuals with an extraordinary ability in the sciences, education, business, or athletics.
- O-1B for individuals with an extraordinary ability in the arts or extraordinary achievement in motion picture or television industry.*
- O-2 for individuals who will accompany an O-1, artist or athlete, to assist in a specific event or performance. U.S. worker and which are essential to the successful performance of the O-1.
- O-3 for individuals who are the spouse or children of O-1’s and O-2’s
*(For an O-1A, the O-2’s assistance must be an “integral part” of the O-1A’s activity. For an O-1B, the O-2’s assistance must be “essential” to the completion of the O-1B’s production. The O-2 worker has critical skills and experience with the O-1 that cannot be readily performed by a)
- Spouse, children, and assistant(s) included. Your spouse, children, and/or assistants may be able to accompany you as well.
- Three year temporary stay. This visa is initially granted for up to three years, but can be extended for one year at a time.
- No limit on extensions. But visa must be for one year at a time.
1. Must demonstrate extraordinary ability by sustained national or international acclaim.*
2. Must be coming temporarily to the United States to continue work in the area of extraordinary ability.
3. To qualify for an O-1 visa in the motion picture or television industry, the beneficiary must demonstrate extraordinary achievement evidenced by a degree of skill and recognition significantly above that ordinarily encountered to the extent the person is recognized as outstanding, notable or leading in the motion picture and/or television field.
*Extraordinary ability meaning in the following fields:
Science, education, business or athletics means a level of expertise indicating that the person is one of the small percentage who has risen to the very top of the field of endeavor.
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.
Motion picture or television industry means the beneficiary must demonstrate extraordinary achievement evidenced by a degree of skill and recognition significantly above that ordinarily encountered to the extent the person is recognized as outstanding, notable or leading in the motion picture and/or television field.
4. Your employment in the US must qualify as an “Event.”
5. Your petition must be filed by a US employer, US Agent, or foreign employer through a US Agent.
6. Must have an advisory opinion from a peer group, labor organization, or management organization.