How to get a P visa Extension?

P-1, P-2 P-3 or almost any other work visa can be extended.

Every employment based visa was created by Congress to address the needs of private sector industries.  The logic behind Congress’ decision is to meet the needs of ever-changing commercial conditions.  The projects, concerts, attendance, interests, media coverage may tweak or drastically change the original itineraries submitted to USCIS.  If any such changes occurs, our entertainment visa specialists are expert of extending P visas.

The main condition is that a P visa must be extended before its expiration date.  If an extension request is filed even one day after the expiration date, unfortunately, it will get denied.  There are so many other factors that must be taken into consideration before planning the P visa extension package.  One is to submit a new itinerary, sign a new amended contract with the performers and make venue and advertisement arrangements.

The sponsoring entertainment company is not obliged to justify the change or blame the delay or cancellations on someone else. This is not USCIS’ concern.  As long as, there is a need for an artist in the US, the conditions of employment remain in tact, and documents to substantiate the facts mentioned above are submitted, the P visa extension will be granted.  If an entertainment company needs an artist in the US for a longer period of time, it means it anticipates to make more money.  Profitable entertainment companies invest in complying with the US Immigration Law and hiring experienced immigration attorneys.

The maximum validity period of a P visa is one year.  Thus, a P visa can extended in one-year increments only.  There is no minimum period of an extension request.  As mentioned above, the main requirement is to prove that the show must go on”.  The petitioner must prepare updated venue contracts, promotional material and other documents required to pull off more concerts or other appearances.

The filing fee for an extension is $325 and the Premium Processing fee is $1,225.  Regular processed extension will remain pending for about 5-6 months. Premium processing will take 2 weeks.

The important note is that the petition does not have to be approved before the visa expiration date. It must be only filed. It means that an experienced visa attorney must prepare a convincing extension package in advance before the visa expires. The USCIS also requires documents showing the maintenance of the P classification status.

If a P visa petition requesting an extension of stay has not been filed, a musician or other entertainer will be subject to the inadmissibility bar. Please see the discussion on visa overstay consequences here.   We strongly encourage entertainment and other corporate client do not let P and any other visas lapse. It is not good for the artists, nor for the companies.

If you have any questions, please contact our ilexlaw immigration team.