US to Increase Fees for Certain Visas by 50 per Cent

The fee for the United States’ O and P visas will increase by more than 50 per cent, starting from October 2, the United States Department of Homeland and Security has announced.

Moreover, internationals who want to apply for these visas will face a longer processing time, VisaGuide.World reports.

Applying for  O visa petitions, which is created for individuals with extraordinary ability or achievement will mount from $460 to $705, which marks a 53 per cent increase.

Filing fees for P visa petitions, which is dedicated to the families of entertainers and athletes, will cost $460 to $695, a 51 per cent increase.

The number of people covered by a single petition also has been changed by the US Department of Homeland and Security.

Each is now capped at 25 individuals, which means that larger ensembles, such as a 90-piece orchestra will be required to apply for four visas in order to cover its members.

Through the United States P visa international entertainment groups, recognised athletes, performers, and cultural coaches are eligible to enter the US.

Athletes who want to temporarily work in their field of expertise, in the US, need an O visa. There are three main categories of  O visas: O1 visa (for persons with extraordinary abilities), O2 visa (for the assistants of O1 visa holders) and O3 visa (for dependents of O1 visa holders).

The Department of Homeland and Security’ latest proposal has caused polemics and has been criticised by the art sector.

One commenter stressed that the move would “diminish the quality of arts in the United States,” and artists would be unable to afford to tour and make a living from their craft.”

But, according to the DHS, the new fees are intended to recover the estimated full cost to US Citizenship and Immigration Services of providing immigration adjudication and naturalisation services.