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P Visas Attorney in Florida

P visas are not for ordinary people wishing to enter the United States. They are specifically made for nonimmigrants who are visiting the United States as athletes or entertainers. The most common form of P visas is for these types of elite figures. In other words, athletes and entertainers who are internationally recognized with a particularly high level of achievement in their respective artistic and/or entertainment categories. Additionally, there are categories of P visas that allow for “culturally unique” entertainers via certain exchange programs. P visas allow for the citizens of the United States to learn more about and participate in unique expressions of art, entertainment, and athleticism from all around the world.

This type of visa allows its holder to frequently travel in and out of the U.S. for the amount of time that it is valid. Fortunately, there are ways to expedite the already quick process of obtaining one. If you are in need of a P Visa, it is recommended that you contact a knowledgeable immigration attorney to schedule your initial consultation. This is particularly pertinent because obtaining P visas can take a long time, especially without the help of a P visa attorney.

Different Types of P Visas

As previously mentioned, P visas come in a variety of categories. There are P visas for internationally recognized athletes, entertainers, members of entertainment groups, dependents of P visa holders as well as visa for those supporting individuals with P visas. Listed below, are each type of P visa available.

  1. P-1 Visas: A P-1 visa applies to internationally recognized athletes and/or coaches who are a part of a team or franchise within the U.S. Examples include professional athletes in the NBA, NFL, Olympic athletes, and the like. These individuals will typically apply for a P-1A petition. Those who apply for a P-1B visa can include an individual who is an essential part of a performance and/or a part of an international group that has been recognized as extraordinary for at least one year in most instances. This is specifically for those performing and/or traveling as a group.
  2. P-2 Visas: The P-2 visa is for entertainers in a group or individuals who are essential personnel of the group, who  perform under a specific exchange program between another organization in the U.S. This exchange must be equal with regard to the caliber of the entertainers, number of group members, time employed, and compensation.
  3. P-3 Visas: P-3 visas are for individuals or groups of artist/entertainers as well as their needed support staff who are visiting the U.S. to help to introduce, teach or develop a unique performance. This can include many types of performances such as musical, cultural, ethnic, theatrical, etc. Those seeking a P-3 visa can be a part of a recently formed group as there are no regulations on the length of time that the group has to be together.
  4. P-4 Visas: P-4 visas are specifically for the family members and spouses of P visa holders. These classifications are specifically defined and must be adhered to or you will risk the denial of your P-4 application.

How to Apply for a P Visa

Each type of P visa may require slightly different procedures to apply. However, they will all require a U.S. employer to submit Form I-129 in addition to the required documentation and the appropriate fee. Included in the required supporting documents is a written consultation from the appropriate labor organization, copies of contracts, event itinerary and/or detailed explanation of event(s), in addition to two forms of evidence to prove the group’s status as internationally recognized and a history of performances, if applicable. After the petition has been approved, members of the group/team can apply for their P visas at a U.S. embassy or consulate abroad. It is important to understand that each petition will be unique and may require varying levels of expertise and time. If you are unsure of which steps to take, which P visas to apply for, or whether or not you are eligible, it is best to work with an experienced P visa attorney.

Extending Your Visa

In most instances, P visas can be extended. The amount of time granted for an extension will depend on which P visa you currently hold. In order to get approved for an extension, you must maintain the same qualifications required to obtain it. Proof must be provided with additional work/shows in the United States. Some P visas can only be extended for a year at a time, classifications like the P-1 can be extended for up to five years at a time, but cannot exceed 10 years overall.

Change of Employer

Holders of P visas are permitted to change their employer. For example, if an internationally acclaimed and recognized music group changes from one U.S. management company to another, they can have their P-1 transferred. However, your new employer will be required to file a new Form I-129. You will not be allowed to start working for your new employer until the form has been approved by the USCIS.

What to Look For in a P Visa Attorney in Florida

Those applying for P visas are typically at the top of their respective fields. One misstep in the application and/or petition process can unnecessarily delay its approval. This potential dealy can result in missed shows and subsequent loss of funds. In order to avoid this potentially devastating consequence, it is best that you work with an immigration attorney who is experienced, knowledgeable, and expedient. If you are a company in the United States petitioning for entertainers and/or athletes to work for you within the U.S. or you are the entertainer applying for the visa, contact the knowledgeable and experienced attorneys at Florida Immigration Law Counsel to get started today.

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