Figure Skater Approved for P-1 Visa in 1 Month

Figure Skater Approved for P-1 Visa in 1 Month

The U.S. P-1 visa is a non-immigrant visa issued to internationally recognized athletes, sports groups, and performing arts groups to compete or perform in the U.S. There is no quota for these visas, but the International Recognized standard is not as easy to meet, so the P-1 visa denial rate is always high. Recently, Tsang & Associates has successfully applied for P-1 visas for two clients. The following takes readers through this case.


The guest, Ms. Liu, has been a figure skating hobby since she was young and her family has focused on nurturing it. She has participated in various events of various sizes around the world, including Hong Kong, China, Mainland China, Taiwan, the United States and Europe, and has achieved considerable success before she was 20 years old.

Ms. Liu’s mother wanted her daughter to make further development in the United States, and the original B1/B2 visa was no longer suitable, but she was struggling to know the most suitable way to come to the United States instead. After being introduced by a friend, Ms. Liu’s mother found Tsang & Associates. Although Ms. Liu and her mother do not live in California, we developed a P-1 visa application plan for our client through telephone communication. On November 8, we received the RFE on the 18th, and on December 1, the application was approved.


– The P-1 visa is brand new to the guest, with no prior preparation, no employer and no references.
– Guests must depart the United States at the end of November, but are coming back in December and require to come in on a P-1 visa at that time, with a tight timeline.
– The mother wants to change to a P visa to accompany her daughter as well. However, the P-4 dependent visa for P-1 is issued to the spouse and children of the P-1, and the parents are not included in the dependent visa.


– What if the applicant meets “internationally recognized” standards?
– How can I find a U.S. employer in a short period of time?
– How can I get favorable counsel from the AFL-CIO?

Although Ms. Liu has won many awards, there is still a distance from the “internationally recognized” standard, after the research and collation of Zang’s team, we have classified and explained the various awards and reports, emphasizing the status and role of these events in figure skating, and meeting the “internationally recognized The level of “internationally recognized” is emphasized.

Our attorneys were able to convince four references to support Ms. Liu’s application in the shortest possible time, and one was willing to apply as Ms. Liu’s employer.

However, obtaining a favorable opinion from a labor organization is not easy. After determining which labor organization to consult with, there is a certain process to go through to obtain the opinion, and if the opinion is unfavorable to the applicant, a rebuttal will be required. This process takes a long time and meeting the client’s time requirements is difficult.


After consideration, Mr. Tsang decided to submit the application first, wait for the ILO’s consultant’s opinion during the approval process, and then revert to USCIS upon receipt. After repeated communication between Mr. Zang’s team and the ILO, we obtained a favorable opinion from the ILO on November 17. Therefore, we were not surprised to receive the RFE on November 18 and responded quickly.

In addition, Ms. Liu’s mother wanted to convert to a P visa. After careful research, Attorney Tsang’s team also successfully helped Ms. Liu convert from a B1/B2 visa to a P-1 visa!

Lawyer Joseph Tsang commented:

The P-1 visa application has its own uniqueness and is quite different from the common work visas such as L-1, H-1B, etc. There are some caveats, e.g., P-1s are only issued to individual athletes, not to individual entertainers, and individual entertainers should consider O-1 visas.

In the case of a foreign employer, they cannot file the P-1 petition directly for the applicant and need to go through a U.S. agent.

Before applying to USCIS, you need to consult with the AFL-CIO to obtain an advisory opinion. Although the opinion of the AFL-CIO cannot influence the decision of USCIS, it is an important part of the process.

The “Internationally recognized” criterion, if no major international awards have been received, considers “three out of ten”, such as media coverage in major newspapers, magazines, etc., significant positions in well-known organizations or institutions, business success, recognition by experts in the field, salary, etc. If you have not received a major international award, you will be considered for the “three out of ten” criteria, such as media coverage in major newspapers, magazines, etc., a prominent position in a reputable organization or institution, commercial success, recognition by experts in the field, and a high salary.

The P-1 also has a number of advantages: no salary standards or educational requirements; no quota, unlike the H-1B, which must be drawn each year; the ability to work for multiple employers; and the convenience of remaining in the U.S. for J1 status holders who do not receive a waiver, unlike the H-1B and L-1, which have this limitation.

*Client names used are pseudonyms

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