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The P-1 classification allows athletes to come to the U.S. temporarily to perform at a specific athletic competition. Individual internationally recognized athletes, internationally recognized athletic teams, professional athletes, and amateur athletes and coaches that are part of a team or franchise that is located in the U.S. but is part of a foreign league or association may qualify. Applicants for a P-1 visa must be sponsored by a U.S.-based company or organization (often a team, league, club, equipment brand, etc.).Internationally Recognized Individual Athletes Criteria You must be coming to the United States to participate in a specific athletic competition in a sport in which you are internationally recognized. You are internationally recognized if you have a high level of achievement in a sport, demonstrated by a degree of skill and recognition substantially above that ordinarily encountered. Your achievement must be renowned, leading, or well-known in more than one country. The competition(s) you wish to participate in must have a distinguished reputation and be at an internationally recognized level of performance such that it requires the participation of an internationally recognized athlete. Internationally Recognized Athletic Teams Criteria You must be coming to the United States to participate in an athletic competition with a team that, as a unit, has achieved international recognition in the sport. The competition in which your team is participating must have a distinguished reputation and be at an internationally recognized level of performance such that it requires the participation of an internationally recognized athletic team. Professional Athletes You must be coming to the United States to be employed as an athlete by:
- A team that is a member of an association of six or more professional sports teams whose total combined revenues exceed $10 million per year. The association must govern the conduct of its members and regulate the contests and exhibitions in which its member teams regularly engage; or Any minor league team that is affiliated with such an association. Amateur Athletes or Coaches You must be coming to the United States to perform as an athlete or coach as part of a team or franchise that is located in the United States and a member of a foreign league or association. The foreign league or association must meet the following requirements: • The league or association must consist of 15 or more amateur sports teams; • Participation in the league must make players temporarily or permanently ineligible under National Collegiate Athletic Association rules to: o Earn a scholarship in the sport at a U.S. college or university; or o Participate in the sport at a U.S. college or university; • The league or association must be the highest level of amateur performance of that sport in the relevant foreign country; and • A significant number of the individuals who play in the league or association are drafted by a major sports league or a minor league affiliate. Theatrical Ice Skaters You must be coming to the United States to participate in a specific theatrical ice skating production or tour as a professional or amateur athlete who performs individually or as part of a group.