Agents as Petitioners for O-1 and P-1 Petitions

Beneficiaries of O-1 extraordinary ability and P-1 athlete and entertainer petitions may be sponsored by agents in place of a traditional employer. The agent must be representing a foreign or US single or multiple employers.  This is particularly helpful for petitions involving projects with multiple third party employers where it would be onerous to require a separate petition for each employer.

The agent has many obligations and does not just serve as a signator. These obligations include ensuring statements in the petition are accurate, describing in detail the projects and itinerary, providing the terms and conditions between the agent and the beneficiary and the essential terms between the employer and the beneficiary, accepting service of process, notifying USCIS of any material changes in employment and being responsible for the return transportation of the beneficiary.

The agent must be a US person and is usually a company but can also be an individual. It is optimal if the agent is a type of business manager but the agent may also be an accountant or booking agent, or even an attorney (although the immigration attorney should not serve as the agent because of potential conflicts). There must be a contract between the agent and the beneficiary specifying the terms of employment.  The agent must also include statements from the employers authorizing the agent to file the petition.  The agent is not required to receive more traditional forms of consideration, such as a  share of the beneficiary’s profits, but can receive alternative forms of consideration, including the benefits of aesthetic value.