O-1 – The Superstar Visa

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The O-1 Visa is for persons of extraordinary ability in the sciences, arts, business, athletics, education, motion picture and television. The O-1 visa is reserved for individuals who are considered to be at the top of their field. For this reason it is often referred to as the “Superstar Visa.”

The O-1 petition must establish that the beneficiary has demonstrated that he or she has attained continued national or international acclaim and recognition in his or her particular field.

The types of evidence generally requested by USCIS for O-1 petitions depend on the area of work or field in which the O-1 performs. The following are some examples of useful evidence for O-1 cases involving extraordinary ability in science, education, business or athletics:

  • major international awards (e.g. an Olympic medal or Nobel Prize);
  • national awards (e.g. an Oscar or an Emmy);
  • membership in groups that require high achievement in the field;
  • prior employment in high levels;
  • international notoriety;
  • starring roles;
  • significant critical acclaim;
  • government acclaim;
  • notable commercial success
  • high salary compared to others in the field;
  • noteworthy published material.

O-1 status is initially granted for three years and one year extensions are available. The spouses and unmarried children as well as vital support staff may also accompany the O-1 visa holder to the United States.

An established U.S. agent may file on behalf of an alien who is self-employed and uses the agent to arrange short-term employment with numerous employers. If the beneficiary works for more than one employer without using an agent, each employer must file a separate petition.

I hope this article has been helpful but keep in mind it is informational only and not legal advice. Immigration Law can be complicated and mistakes can have severe consequences. If you have legal questions regarding the Superstar Visa, please contact us. It will be my pleasure to help you.

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