O-1 Visa for Fashion Designers and Models
The O-1 visa is a logical choice for fashion industry workers since it has no maximum annual limit and O-1 petitions are processed fairly quickly by the U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Service (USCIS).
Fashion is an international business, with designers and models traveling the world to present and promote their work with teams of make-up artists, stylists, photographers and others whose livelihood depends on being able to travel effortlessly around the globe.
Requirements for an O-1 Visa
To qualify for an O-1 visa, a candidate must be a foreign national who has received and sustained national or international recognition in his or her area of expertise and will be coming to the U.S. to work in that area.
Evidence of sustained national or international recognition includes at least three of the following:
- Recipient of a national or international award or prize in his or her field of expertise;
- Membership in associations relating to the applicant’s field of expertise where outstanding achievement is a prerequisite for membership;
- Published material in professional or major trade publications or media about the applicant’s work;
- Original scholarly, scientific or business contributions of major significance in the subject field of expertise;
- Authorship of scholarly works in the field of expertise;
- A high salary or other remuneration for services;
- Service as a judge, individually or on a panel, of the works of others in the field of expertise; or
- Works in a critical or essential capacity for entities with a distinguished worldwide reputation.
Duration of Stay
An O-1 visa holder may work in the U.S. for up to three years and then apply for an extension. To qualify for an extension, an employer must show there is a continued need for the O-1 visa holder’s employment.