Stages and Secrets of Getting an O-1 Visa PhD

9 mins read

O1 Visa PhD. Having a doctorate in various galluses, national or international awards, recognizing your expertise allows migrant workers to take advantage of the privilege of an O-1 visa to move to the United States for a while (often three years).

The article details the possibilities and nuances of obtaining this type of visa and the prospects that you will expect in the future.

o1 visa USA

O1 Visa PhD: What is This?

This is a kind of non-immigrant visa. It can be used by people who have extraordinary abilities and achievements in such categories:

  1. science;
  2. education;
  3. sport;
  4. art;
  5. business.

Recognition of significance and experience should be confirmed at the national (and even better at the international) level. Such a visa allows a person to work in a certain industry.

Pros and Cons of Getting O-1 Visa PhD

It has several advantages regarding standard work visas:

  1. The main plus is visas O-1 do not have restrictions in quotas. For popular types of work visas in the United States, there are annual issuance limits. For example, the most popular H1B is issued in the amount of 85 thousand visas per year. To understand the scale of demand for these visas, it is worth mentioning that the quota for H1B has ended within five days from the opening of the quota over the past five years. In O-1, the migration policy is very loyal. 15-17 thousand such visas are issued per year in the world; this number is limited only by the number of suitable applicants.
  2. The presence of a green card EB1 describes the requirements for which exactly repeats the text by О-1. Often, after moving to the О-1 and acquiring some noticeable professional merits in the United States, you can apply for a green card and get it with almost the same set of documents.
  3. It does not automatically require paying American taxes before moving and earning income in the United States.
  4. It is quite easily extended provided that the person continues to work according to the professional profile with which he was served.
  5. Lack of requirements for being in the United States — you can spend as much time in the country as you need, without the threat of losing status.
  6. The consideration of the petition and the issuance of a visa takes only a month or two. There is an accelerated procedure for considering a petition in two weeks.

The only tangible disadvantage is that the spouse receives an O-3 visa, which doesn’t allow them to work in the United States. But, the unlimited stay period and the possibility of obtaining a green card remain.

Selection criteria forО-1 visa PhD

First, a PhD is not enough to get O-1 — you need to show that your abilities or achievements are outstanding and are at the top of your field. This can be shown in different ways, but basically, you will want to compile a summary of all your projects, awards, publications, or anything that you think will help establish that you are at the top of your field.

To receive O-1 automatically, you need to have a cool international Nobel Prize or Olympic medal. If there are no such achievements, it will be necessary to prove that you meet at least three of the following six criteria:

  1. Participation in a closed professional community.
  2. Judging competitions or ratings in your field of knowledge.
  3. Press publications dedicated to you or your project.
  4. A high payment level, significantly higher than the average on the market.
  5. Availability of national-level awards in your professional field.
  6. Evidence of a significant contribution to the development and popularization of the applicant’s field of work.

In addition, it is necessary to have the maximum number of recommendations (testimonials) from high-level professionals who are personally familiar with your labor successes ideally, if these experts are from the American market or have international weight and fame.

Documents for O-1 Visa for PhD Holders

An important requirement of an O-1 visa is the presence of an employer in the United States. But there is an interesting loophole in it — you can be an employer yourself by opening an American company in your name. Or turn to friends who already have an American company.

The application must be filed with the following documentary evidence:

  1. Recommendation letter from specialists in your field. The best option will be to have an original document with a seal or other confirmation signs.
  2. Employment contract. A copy of the employment contract must also be provided. If you have an oral agreement with your employer, this significantly reduces the possibility of obtaining a visa.
  3. Itineraries. You need to provide all your plans, actions at the new workplace, a complete description of your position, the timing of the organization’s tasks to approve the USCIS petition. After all, you must prove that you are going to the USA to work in a sector in which you are competent. 
  4. Proof of outstanding ability. Include the entire list of published materials, a list of awards and prizes, provide a list of associations in the work you are affected, and more.

Secrets of the successful application for O-1 Visa PhD 

Applying for a person who has not previously dealt with visas may not be easy, so here are some simple tips that will undoubtedly increase your chances of getting a permit:

  1. Lawyer. If your employer does not have a specially trained lawyer or a legal department in the company, you can easily use the services of private immigration attorneys. They will fully advise you and will even be able to help collect the necessary list of documents and submit a petition.
  2. Show all your achievements. Create a resume detailing everything you’ve achieved in your career. Each of the awards will matter; each article in trade publications and the media about your achievements will have a positive impact. If you really are an expert, but you are not talked about so much, then the best option will be to use the services of special PR agencies, such as PRnews.io. They will quickly post information about you, your performances, and achievements in the best publications in the world. Service specialists will easily be able to collect all the necessary information and highlight you and your successes in a positive light. Even those who are not related to your industry will begin to talk about you.

Avoid mistakes that will save you from an opportunity to receive O-1 Visa PhD. Use our secrets and advice. Working in the United States will open up many advantages and the possibility of such a career development that others can only dream of.

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Anastasiya Britvenko

My name is Anastasiya Britvenko. I’m a content-manager, publisher, copywriter, blogger, English, Ukrainian, Russian translator, teacher, and have a Ph.D. in Economics. I have graduated from a musical school in a piano class. In my spare time, I like to play chess. My further goals include regular self-development, mastering new useful skills, and career advancement whenever possible.

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