P Visas for Artists, Singers, Music Bands and Culturally Unique Programs
P2 Visa for Artists/Entertainers under reciprocal exchange program
The P2 Visa is issued to artists or entertainers, individually or as a group, as well as their essential support personnel, who will be performing under a reciprocal exchange program which is between an organization or organizations in the United States, which may include a management organization, and an organization or organizations in one or more foreign states and which provides for the temporary exchange of artists and entertainers, or groups of artists and entertainers.
For other commercial artists and entertainment groups, the P1 Visa could be more suitable.
The exchange of artists or entertainers shall be similar in terms of caliber of artists, entertainers, terms and conditions of employment, such as length of employment, and number of artists or entertainers involved in the exchange. However, this requirement does not preclude the exchange of an individual for group exchange.
An approved petition for an Entertainment group under the P2 regulations shall be valid for a period of time determined by the Director of USCIS to be necessary to complete the performance or event for which the group is being admitted, but not to exceed one year.
The general evidentiary requirements for all P Visas include the following:
- The evidence specified in the specific sections of the three P visa classifications as indicated below;
- Copies of any written contracts between the Petitioner and the Alien Beneficiary or, if there is no written contract, a summary of the terms of the oral agreement under which the Alien(s) will be employed;
- An explanation of the nature of the events or activities, the beginning and ending dates for the events or activities, and a copy of any itinerary for the events or activities; and
- A written consultation from a labor organization
P2 Visa Evidentiary requirements
A petition for P2 classification shall be accompanied by the following:
- A copy of the formal reciprocal exchange agreement between the U.S. organization(s) which sponsor the aliens and an organization (s) in a foreign country.
- A statement from the sponsoring organization describing the reciprocal exchange of U.S. artists or entertainers as it relates to the specific petition for which P-2 classification is being sought;
- Evidence that an appropriate labor organization in the U.S. was involved in negotiating, or has concurred with, the reciprocal exchange of U.S. and foreign artists or entertainers; and
- Evidence that the alien for whom P-2 classification is being sought and the U.S. artists or entertainers subject to the reciprocal exchange agreement are artists or entertainers with comparable skills and that the terms and conditions of employment are similar.
P2 Essential Support Personnel
An essential support alien may be provided P3 status based on a support relationship with a P2 entertainer or artist. The evidentiary criteria include the following:
- A consultation from a labor organization with expertise in the area of the alien’s skill.
- A statement describing the alien’s prior essentiality, critical skills and experience with the principal alien(s)
- A copy of the written contract or a summary of the terms of the oral agreement between the alien(s) and the employer.
P3 Visa for Artist or Entertainer under a culturally unique program
P3 Classification may be accorded to artists or entertainers, individually or as a group coming to the United States for the purpose of developing, interpreting, representing, coaching or teaching a unique or traditional ethnic, folk, cultural, musical, theatrical, or artistic performance presentation.
The artist or entertainer must furthermore be coming to the United States to participate in a cultural event or events which will further the understanding or development of his ir her art form. The program may be of commercial or noncommercial nature.
“Helping you to obtain the right visa, when you need it”
When you contact our firm for an initial consultation, we will take the time to educate and explain the USCIS immigration laws, regulations and the visa application procedures for your P visa case. As a client, you will receive personal attention and work directly with an experienced attorney who will be able to answer any questions you have and keep you informed and aware of new developments as your case moves forward.
For all of your legal immigration needs, contact the immigration lawyers of Muston & Jack, P.C., at our San Francisco, San Jose or Pasadena California law offices to schedule an initial consultation.