New York Artist Visas Attorneys
Professional Legal Assistance with EB-1 Visas, O-1 Visas & More
The United States offers countless opportunities to artists and entertainers looking to practice their craft or build permanent careers. There are several types of temporary and permanent visas that can facilitate an artist’s performing, living, and working in the country. The visas available to you will likely depend on whether you already have an offer of employment as well as your artistic qualifications and professional accomplishments.
If you are an artist looking to travel to or live in the United States, our New York artist visa lawyers at J&K Law can help you explore all of your immigration options. We can assist you in seeking lawful permanent residency through the EB-1 visa or facilitate an extended stay through an O-1 visa. Our accomplished team has worked with acrobats, photographers, models, actors, musicians, dancers, and many other types of performers. We can leverage our knowledge and 20 years of combined legal experience to secure your visa as quickly as possible.
Lawful Permanent Residency for Artists Through the EB-1 Visa
Most employment-based immigration options require that you have a job offer from a United States employer. Those applying for the EB-1 visa for “priority workers,” however, can self-petition. This means that you can seek and potentially be issued an EB-1 visa without any offer of employment.
To secure an EB-1 visa as an artist, you will need to demonstrate your “extraordinary abilities” in your field. EB-1 visas can be granted to accomplished professionals in all types of arts, including the performing arts, visual arts, fine arts, and culinary arts.
Eligibility generally extends to all craftspeople involved in an art form, not just “above the line” artists. Artists in “below the line” positions, such as choreographers, makeup designers, coaches, and technicians can all potentially qualify for the EB-1 visa if they can demonstrate extraordinary ability in their specific vocation.
Proving extraordinary ability when petitioning for an EB-1 visa generally involves providing evidence of continuing recognition at the national or international level. You will also need to show that leaders in your field recognize, celebrate, and honor your work and achievements
You must meet at least 3 of the following criteria to be eligible for the EB-1 visa as an artist:
- You have received awards for excellence at the national or international level
- You have made major and significant contributions to your field that are recognized by your professional colleagues
- You belong to a professional organization whose membership requirements include demonstrating exceptional ability and achievement in your field
- You have served as a leader in one or more professional organizations recognized in your field
- You have served as a judge in a professional competition in your field
- You have published articles in major publications recognized in your field
- You and your work has been the subject of pieces published in major publications
- Your work has been displayed in exhibits, galleries, or showcases
- You have achieved commercial success in your field
- You have secured a high salary or rate of pay relative to others in your field
When compiling and submitting your evidence, you will need to convince United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) that you are a leader in your field and consequently qualify for the EB-1 visa. This will often require contextualizing the evidence that you plan to submit.
For example, say a feature exploring your career and work has been published in a prestigious but niche magazine. You may need to explain how this publication is held in high regard by professionals in your field and therefore contributes to your meeting the criteria for the EB-1 visa. Obtaining letters from other experts and leaders in your field can be extremely useful in providing objective context.
The EB-1 visa can be an especially useful tool for artists looking to build a permanent life in the United States. The EB-1 visa is a type of green card and confers lawful permanent residency, meaning that you will be able to live and work in the United States indefinitely. You will also be able to pursue U.S. citizenship after undergoing a mandatory waiting period. Our New York artist visa attorneys can review your qualifications, determine whether you are likely to be eligible, and assist you with every element of your self-petition.