Planning to Work in the United States? California Immigration Attorney Explains What You Need to Complete Your O-1 Visa Application.

After much deliberation, you have decided that the O-1 visa is the perfect way for you to begin working in the U.S. It is less than a year before your U.S. employment begins, and you can finally file your Form I-129 (Petition for Nonimmigrant Worker). What else will you need to send to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) before your petition can be approved?

Along with your O-1 visa application, foreign workers must submit documentary evidence of their qualifications and proof of employment. This includes:

  • Consultation. You must provide a written opinion from a peer group with expertise in your field, such as a labor organization, or from one person designated by the group, explaining how your abilities can be considered exemplary. For example, an O-1 petition from an applicant working in television may provide a consultation from an appropriate labor union or a management organization with expertise in the field.
  • Contract. You must include a copy of the contract between you and the person acting as your petitioner—usually an employer or agent. This may be a written contract or a summary of the terms of an oral agreement under which the visa holder will be employed. Both written and oral contracts must include what the employer offered the employee and what the employee accepted.
  • Itineraries. You are responsible for providing a complete work itinerary, including beginning and ending dates of specific events and an explanation of the nature of the events or activities. Your petitioner is responsible for establishing that it is necessary for you to be present for specific events—such as a tour or special performance—based on your extraordinary ability.