P-1 Visas for Athletic and Entertainment Groups

Who is Eligible?
How to Apply
Documentation Requirements
Processing Times
Status of Spouse and Minor Children

Who is Eligible?

An internationally recognized artist, entertainer, or athlete may enter the U.S. to participate in a performance for an American employer or an international employer working through an American agent. The performance must require a performer of international quality.

How to Apply

Petitioner must prove to the satisfaction of the United States consul official that:

Perform at an athletic competition.

The petitioner must be coming temporarily to perform individually or as part of a team.
The performance must be internationally recognized.
The petition must be accompanied by the following:
  1. The petitioner must have a tendered contract with a major U.S. sports team, or a contract as an individual participant with international recognition;
  2. The petition must be accompanied with at least two of the following:
    1. The petitioner has participated in an athletic event in a prior season with a major U.S. team;
    2. The petitioner has participated in an international competition with a national team;
    3. The petitioner has participated in an athletic event in a prior season with a U.S. university or college;
    4. A written statement from a sports media or an expert in the sport who confirms how the petitioner or team is internationally recognized;
    5. A written statement from a U.S. sports team, confirming that the petitioner or team is internationally recognized;
    6. The petitioner or team would be ranked if the sport was internationally ranked;
    7. The petitioner or team has received a significant award or honor in the sport.

Perform as an entertainment group.

The petitioning group must be established for at least one year and be internationally recognized.
Seventy-five percent of the group must have had an important relationship with the group for at least one year. Each member of the group must play an integral part to the group's performance.
Each petition must accompanied by the following:
  1. The group must prove that they have been operating under the name shown on the petition for at least one year;
  2. A statement from the petitioner stating the exact dates that each member of the group has been employed by the group on a regular basis; and
  3. Proof that the performing group has international recognition as a performing artist. This may be proving with evidence of the group's nomination or reception of an international prize or award, or by three of the following:
    1. Proof that the group has performed and will be performing as an entertainment group in events or productions that have critical reviews, publicity released, advertisements, contracts, publications, or endorsements;
    2. Proof that the group is internationally recognized and has outstanding achievements that have been recognized by major newspapers, magazines, trade journals, or other published documents;
    3. Proof that the group will be performing for organizations and establishments that possess a distinguished reputation which have been notified by a trader journal, publications, articles in newspapers, or testimonials.
    4. Proof that the group has a record of critically or commercial acclaimed success. This record must be accompanied by past box office receipts, video, record, or cassette sales, ratings, and other achievements in the field.
    5. Proof that the group has recognition of outstanding achievements from critics, organizations, government agencies, or other recognized experts in the field.
    6. Proof that the group commands a high salary compared to other groups in the same field. The proof must be evidenced by a contract or other reliable evidence.

Documentation Requirements

  1. CONTRACT - Current contract between U.S. employer or agent and performer setting out specific itinerary, terms and conditions of scheduled performance;
  2. INTERNATIONAL RECOGNITION - Proof of performer's international standing as outstanding in their field;
  3. ADVISORY OPINION - letter from recognized expert in the field of performance setting out performer's credentials;
  4. LABOR CONSULTATION - Letter from peer group establishing existence of labor unions and advisory of performer's credentials.


A P-1 petition may be valid for up to five years. There may be an extension granted after a five-year period for no more than five years. The P-1 Visa may not exceed 10 years.

The Beneficiary will be allowed to apply for P-1 visa extensions in the U.S. as long as the need for beneficiary's services continues. The extensions will be granted in one-year increments or until the project is finished.

Status of Spouse and Minor Children

Petitioner may request admission for spouses and children in P-4 status. Dependents may enter upon showing proof of immediate relation and admissibility to principal. Dependents may not engage in employment. Dependents may attend school or college.

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