The O-1A nonimmigrant visa, also known as the extraordinary ability nonimmigrant visa, allows an individual to come to the United States and work for a particular employer. Like the H-1B it is employer sponsored, so you will need an employer to offer you a position to apply for this visa type. However, unlike the H-1B there is no “cap”, there are always O Visas available to those who qualify. In order to qualify for this visa you must show that you have sustained national or international acclaim. You can show this in two ways: First, if you have received a major, internationally recognized award such as a Nobel prize; or, Second, if you can show you meet 3 out of 8 listed criteria. While the overall standard and the criteria you need to meet to qualify are very similar to the Extraordinary Ability green card application, they are also different in key ways, making this temporary visa accessible to more people than the green card application. This temporary visa can also be a good option for those who came to the US on a J-1 and who are unable to get a waiver of the two year home residency requirement but need to change to another non-immigrant status that will allow them to work. Please call us to discuss if you would like to know if the O-1 would work in your particular case.