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Summary of Requirements for Nonimmigrant O-1 VisaS


Individual of Extraordinary Ability in the
Fields of Science, Education, Business or Athletics

To qualify for an O-1 nonimmigrant visa as an individual of extraordinary ability in the fields of science, education, business, or athletics, the individual must provide a consultation letter from the governing organization of his/her field of endeavor and must demonstrate sustained national or international acclaim and recognition for achievements in the field of expertise by providing evidence of:

Receipt of a major, internationally recognized award, such as the Nobel Prize,

OR

At least three of the following forms of documentation:

  1. Prizes or awards. Documentation of the alien's receipt of nationally or internationally recognized prizes or awards for excellence in the field of endeavor
  2. Membership in elite associations. Documentation of the alien's membership in associations in the field for which classification is sought, which require outstanding achievements of their members, as judged by recognized national or international experts in their disciplines or fields
  3. Articles written by others re: alien. Published material in professional or major trade publications or major media about the alien, relating to the alien's work in the field for which classification is sought, which shall include the title, date, and author of such published material, and any necessary translation
  4. Evidence of participation in review of others. Evidence of the alien's participation on a panel, or individually, as a judge of the work of others in the same or in an allied field of specialization to that for which classification is sought
  5. Original research or contribution. Evidence of the alien's original scientific, scholarly, or business-related contributions of major significance in the field
  6. Books or articles. Evidence of the alien's authorship of scholarly articles in the field, in professional journals, or other major media
  7. Prior Employment in Critical Role of Organization. Evidence that the alien has been employed in a critical or essential capacity for organizations and establishments that have a distinguished reputation
  8. High Salary. Evidence that the alien has either commanded a high salary or will command a high salary or other remuneration for services, evidenced by contracts or other reliable evidence.

Note: If the criteria above do not readily apply to the alien's occupation, the petitioner may submit comparable evidence in order to establish the alien's eligibility.

For the O-1 visa, much depends upon the applicant�s securing letters of recommendation from nationally and/or internationally recognized professionals in the field of endeavor.� The quality and depth of these letters are seminal to the outcome of the case.� Another O-1 requirement (mentioned above) is a consultation letter from a national peer group for which membership is by election (e.g., the National Academies of Science).� This group does not need to endorse the candidate but does need to say they have no objection to the candidate�s O-1 visa being granted after having reviewed the candidate�s credentials.

Processing of the O-1 using �premium processing� is normally completed within 30 days after submission.�

Individual of Extraordinary Ability in the Arts/Motion Pictures/Television)

To qualify for an O-1 nonimmigrant visa as an individual of extraordinary ability in the fields of arts or artists and entertainers in the Motion Picture or Television industry, the individual must provide a consultation letter from the governing organization of his/her field of endeavor and must demonstrate sustained national or international acclaim and recognition for achievements in the field of expertise by providing evidence of:

Receipt of a major, internationally recognized award, such as an Academy Award, an Emmy, a Grammy, or a Director�s Guild Award,
OR
At least three of the following forms of documentation:

  1. Has performed/will perform services as a lead/starring participant in productions/events with distinguished reputation as shown by critical reviews, ads, publicity releases, publications, contracts or endorsements;
  2. National/international recognition for achievements through critical reviews, other published materials by or about the beneficiary in major papers, trade journals/magazines, etc.;
  3. Has performed in a lead, starring or critical role for organizations and establishments that have a distinguished reputation evidenced by media articles, testimonials, etc;
  4. Has a record of major commercial or critically acclaimed success;
  5. Has achieved significant recognition from organizations, critics, government agencies, recognized experts;
  6. Has commanded or will command a high salary/other remuneration in relation to others in the field.

Note: If the criteria above do not readily apply to the alien's occupation, the petitioner may submit comparable evidence in order to establish the alien's eligibility.





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