Any U.S. employer, a U.S. agent, or a foreign employer through a U.S. agent can petition for you. However, the petitioner must at least be in the artist's field of expertise. This also means, that a U.S. citizen, who is in the artist's field may petition for them as long as there is a legitimate reason why the petitioner requires the artist to work in the United States.
2. What are the duties of a petitioner?
If the employment of an O nonimmigrant beneficiary is terminated for reasons other than voluntary resignation, the employer must pay for the reasonable cost of your return transportation to the O nonimmigrant’s last place of residence before entering into the United States. If an agent filed the petition for the employer, the agent and the employer are equally responsible for paying these costs.
The O visa does not allow an artist to freelance, but if the petitioner is also an "agent", the artist may be able to work with different employers during their time the United States. If the petitioner acts as an agent for both the employers and the artist, the artist may be able to work with different employers during their length of stay.
The first thing to note is that being an "agent" is not the same as being a commercial agent that gets an artist work. An "agent" for the purposes of immigration just means that the person is authorized to act as a representative for other employers. The petitioner does not have to demonstrate that it normally serves as an agent out of context of the immigration petition.
The petitioner / agent just needs to present a signed document signed by the beneficiary's other employers which state that the petitioner is authorized to act in that employer's place as an agent for the limited purpose of filing the O visa.
Immigration law can be convoluted and complex. At the Law Offices of Marcus Yi, we are NYC based O1 / Artist Visa lawyers devoted to guiding you through US immigration law. Contact us today to schedule a consultation.