Teams in the United States have been recruiting foreign athletes from around the world to compete in sports like soccer, baseball, and football. In addition, state of the art training facilities make the United States an attractive location for high caliber athletes to train for international competitions like the Olympics. In some cases, these athletes may want to become permanent United States residents. This is where EB-1 green cards can be helpful.
An EB-1 visa and green card is available for foreign nationals who demonstrate extraordinary ability in the sciences, arts, education, business, and athletics. To obtain an EB-1 visa, an athlete must be able to demonstrate extraordinary ability in their sport, plan to work in the sport in the United States, and demonstrate that their work in that sport will be beneficial to the United States. The athlete must show that they have “sustained or international acclaim” and that their achievements have been recognized in their field.
The athlete must show either a one-time achievement such as a major internationally recognized award like an Olympic gold medal or provide evidence of three of the ten categories, which include:
While some of these categories do not apply to athletics, there are a number of different ways to fulfill the others.
There are some advantages to EB-1 green cards. Athletes do not need a labor certification or proof of a job offer. It is usually a faster process than other green card applications.
If you are an athlete who is interested in applying for an EB-1 green card, it can help to have an experienced immigration attorney on your side. At Serving Immigrants, Inc., we have the experience and the knowledge to guide you through the application process. Contact us online or call us at (305) 907-6151 to schedule a strategy session.