The O1 visa is a non-resident US visa for people who demonstrate extraordinary ability in their field, whether that be the arts, sport, business, education, or the sciences.
The O1 could be considered the non-resident equivalent of the EB1-1 ( the “Extraordinary Ability Green Card”, which gives permanent residency). This does not mean that the requirements to obtain an O1 are any lower: the applicant needs to prove they are at the top of their field.
The O1 visa is normally valid for up 3 years. However, if it is granted to cover a specific event, production, or activity, the period may be less. Extensions are available in 1-year increments, and there is no limit on extensions, however the visa holder must show that they are continuing with same position or activity for which the original visa was granted.
Dependents of an O1 visa holder (i.e. spouse or unmarried children under age 21) can apply for O3 visas, which allow them to accompany the primary visa holder for the duration of their stay in the United States, either arriving with the O1 holder or at a later date. O3 visa holders are permitted to study but not to work in the U.S..
Applicants must be able to provide sufficient evidence for at least three of the following conditions:
In the case of O2 visa holders (support personnel), they may be able to move to EB3 Green Card in certain circumstances.
Please contact us to arrange your visa strategy session, where one of our immigration attorneys will be happy to help you navigate your options.
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