Helping the World's Best Athletes Compete and Train in the United States
P-1: INDIVIDUAL OR TEAM OF ATHLETES, FOR COMPETITION AND TRAINING
Professional fighters seeking to compete and/or train in the US can obtain a visa for up to 5 years and the visa is renewable for another five years. Members of a team of athletes can stay in the U.S. for up to a year. The P-1 visa process takes approximately 1 month or more to process but can be expedited for extra fees. There are also visas available for immediate family of the petitioner as well. Please click the link below for complete break down of the process and to submit information for a consultation.
EB-1, EB-2, EB-3: Employment Visas for Athletes seeking to immigratE
EB Visas are appropriate for athletes that are looking to make a permanent move to the United States as opposed to stay for a temporary time to train or compete. These visas either usually require a high standard of achievement or for a sponsor to obtain a labor certification. In addition, depending on the category, there can be extended priority dates for visas which means the petitioner could have to wait for visa to become available.
- EB-1: Is appropriate for an athlete with extraordinary ability. The standard for approval is similar to an O-1 but is a self petition visa for which no employer is required.
- EB-2: Is also appropriate for athletes with exceptional abilities but the standard for approval is lower than the EB-1. The EB-2 requires either an employer sponsor to obtain a labor petition or for the petitioner to obtain a National Interest Waiver.
- EB-3: Is appropriate for skilled or professional workers which can characterized a professional athlete or coach.
A Labor Certification requires employer/sponsor to go through PERM LABOR CERTIFICATION, . In the last three options, the athlete and employer must complete a process called PERM labor certification, which can take 6 to 9 months.
B-1/B-2: Visitor Visa for Amateur Fighters
Amateur fighters that are training and/or competing without receiving a prizefighting purse may quality for a B-1/B-2 visitor visa. If the fighter is from a country in the visa waiver program, they might not even need to obtain the visa. The B-1/B-2 visa is very inexpensive and typically takes less than a month to obtain. While athletes cannot be compensated for competition, the athlete may receive benefits of free living expenses or reimbursement for living expenses. This visa may be granted for up to 6 months and is appropriate for short term training, summer courses, and unpaid tours.
O-1: Individual with Extraordinary Ability or Achievement
An O visa is a specialty visa reserved for individuals of extraordinary ability in the fields of science, education, business, arts, or athletics. This visa is issued for a period of up to three years and renewable. For an athlete, there is a high standard to obtain this visa and requires sustained national or international acclaim such as world championship. These visas require stringent documentation for supporting evidence that includes evidence of achievement in competition, letters of support from industry experts, and support from media articles.
The O Visa is extremely fact specific and a consultation is necessary before pursuing an application. Please begin the process by clicking the link below to submit information for a consultation.
P-3: ARTIST OR ENTERTAINER (INDIVIDUAL OR GROUP), CULTURAL TRAINING
To perform, teach or coach under a program that is culturally unique or a traditional ethnic, folk, cultural, musical, theatrical, or artistic performance or presentation. Includes persons providing essential services in support of the P-3 beneficiary.