The O-1 visa is issued for temporary work assignments, and mainly provided to people who are excellent in their profession. Since this visa has been used largely by artists and people of the entertainment industry, there are many myths and misconceptions surrounding the O-1. Here are some of the popular myths about O-1, and the facts behind these misconceptions.
Myth 1- The O-1 Visa is given only to artists and people in the film industry.
Fact – The statute governing O-1 visa includes professionals in sports, business, education, arts, and science fields. The interpretation of the statute by the Immigration Service encompasses professionals of almost all fields including designers and chefs as well.
Myth 2 – People have to be extraordinary in their field to obtain the O-1 visa
Fact – Level of skill does play a major role in determining candidates for the O-1 visa; however, it is not limited to only the very best. The person should have greater ability compared to other people in the field, and should have been consistently recognized for their work. However, it mainly depends on the subjective judgment of immigration examiner, since there are not any objective standards for meeting the O-1 requirements.
Myth 3 – Testimonial letters are enough to prove excellence in the field
Fact – For establishing excellence in a field, mere testimonial letters are usually not enough. To qualify for O-1 status the Immigrations Service requires certain evidence that includes press coverage of accomplishments, being member of organizations that accept only achievers, being employed by a reputed organization in a critical position, published works, and leading performances.
Myth 4 – Job offer by important company or person of the field is enough to attain an O-1 visa
Fact – A sponsoring employer by itself is not enough for acquiring O-1 status. The person should also be able to produce the required evidence of establishing excellence in the field. Secondly, the person should also be able to show a deal memo or contract agreement for a project, from a reputed employer in the field.
Myth 5 – Agency sponsorship is enough
Fact – Agency sponsorship will only be accepted when it is a recognized agency in the field, and there is proof of minimum one contract with a specific employer who is not part of the agency. The person will also have to produce the work itinerary showing the various projects, in which he or she will be taking part.
Myth 6 – Person can work for only one employer under an O-1 visa
Fact – A person can work for various employers if he or she has multiple contracts. In such a case, the person can petition O-1 through agency sponsorship, and include all the contracts that he or she will be working on. The person will most probably be granted an umbrella O-1 covering the different employers.
Myth 7 – O-1 is granted for unlimited time until the project is over.
Fact – O-1 visa is only granted for three-year period initially, as long as the person is able to show evidence of time required for completing specific projects.
Myth 8 – Support personnel can be included in the person's O-1 visa.
Fact – Support personnel have to apply for an O-2 visa if they are accompanying the person with an O-1 visa, provided either of the following two conditions are met:
The support person has a long professional working relationship with the O-1 person
The support person has been working on a certain project with the O-1 person that has to continue in the U.S.
Hire A Los Angeles O-1 Visa Attorney
Call Los Angeles O-1 visa attorney Patricia Depew today for a free consultation. Patricia represents clients throughout Los Angeles County, Orange County, Ventura County, the San Fernando Valley region, and the surrounding areas. She can help you with your case and make sure that you understand exactly how the O-1 visa applies to your scenario.