P visa is a temporary employment visa given to aliens athletes, artists and entertainers and their dependents by the US. The P category of visa has these further subcategories:
– P-1 is for individual athletes or teams of athletes, or members of an internationally recognized entertainment group.
Amateur athletes such as hockey team players, tennis players, etc, who could not qualify under the O-1 category and musical bands, circus groups performers and trainers can file for this category of P visa.
– P-2 applies to the artists and entertainers who will be performing under an exchange program between an organization in the US and an organization in another country.
– P-3 is for artists and entertainers who can perform in a culturally unique program or individuals coming to the US temporarily to teach or coach in the same capacity.
– P-4 is for the dependents of the alien; spouse and children under 21, accompanying them.
Written consultation is required for all categories of P visa. It must be established that the individual is internationally recognized. For that the petitioner may provide a documentation of a major achievement such as a nomination or an international award or prize or they can provide at least three of the following:
– Has and will perform as leading/starring group in productions/events with distinguished reputations;
– International recognition/acclaim for outstanding achievements;
– Has and will perform as leading/starring group for organizations with distinguished reputations;
– Record of major commercial/critically acclaimed success;
– Significant recognition from organizations, critics, governments, other recognized experts;
– Commanded/will command high salary/other substantial remuneration relative to others similarly situated.
For filing for the P-2 category, the petitioner must contain the following documentation:
– Written consultation by an appropriate labor organization;
– Copy of the formal reciprocal exchange agreement between the sponsoring U.S. organization(s) and the organization(s) in a foreign country which will receive the United States artist or entertainer;
– Statement from the sponsoring organization describing the reciprocal exchange of United States artists or entertainers as it relates to the specific petition for which classification is sought;
– Evidence that you and the U.S. artist or entertainer subject to the reciprocal exchange agreement are artists with comparable skills and that the terms and conditions of employment are similar;
– Evidence that an appropriate labor organization in the United States was involved in negotiating, or has concurred with, the reciprocal exchange of U.S. and foreign artists or entertainers.
It is a good option for performers because it has lower requirements than other categories of visa. This category of visa is available throughout the year because unlike the H-1B visa it has no quota on the number of visas that may be granted each year by the US. The visa is available at any time of the year and with premium processing it can be obtained within 15 calendar days. There is no limit on the number of extensions that one may get on this visa hence it can be renewed indefinitely. Another advantage that this visa has is that it is considered to be a dual intent visa which means that due to the fact that it can be indefinitely renewed, one may keep getting extensions on the visa and have their green card petition pending at the same time. However, the accompanying dependents of the P visa holder cannot get authorization to work.