USCIS now accepts negative P visa consultation letters directly from labor unions
Pasricha & Patel Takeaways:
USCIS has announced that it will start to accept negative consultation letters that are issued by labor unions which are related to P nonimmigrant visa petitions. Consultation letters issued by U.S. labor organization are normally required for P visa petitions. P petitions are related to sponsorship of athletes, artists, entertainers, and their essential support personnel.
USCIS clarifies that P visa petitioners can continue to submit the P visa consultation letters with the P visa petition to the USCIS. The reason USCIS has announced this rule is because USCIS says that it has heard from labor unions expressing concerns that some P visa petitioners may have falsified those consultation letters and submitted the consultation letters as ‘no-objections’ or ‘favorable’, when in reality, the letters were ‘negative’ (not recommending the P visa approval).
USCIS is already accepting copies of negative consultation letters for the O visa petitions, which cover individual who possesses extraordinary ability in the sciences, arts, education, business, or athletics, or who has a demonstrated record of extraordinary achievement in the motion picture or television industry and has been recognized nationally or internationally for those achievements. So, USCIS is now expanding the practice to P visa petitions.
USCIS states that labor unions can now submit copies of the negative O and P visa petition consultation letters directly to the USCIS and that way, the USCIS can compare those letters to the consultation letters that are submitted by the O or P petitioner. USCIS has even designated a specific email address for the labor unions to send just the negative consultation letters to the USCIS: UnionConsultationMailbox@uscis.dhs.gov And USCIS asks that the labor union include the O or P beneficiary’s name and the last five digit of the beneficiary’s passport number on the negative consultation letters.
From this announcement, which takes effect immediately, it is clear that this step is being taken by the USCIS to combat what it perceives to be fraudulent filings or ill intent by some O or P petitioners who may not be able to provide the necessary positive consultation letter from the requisite labor union on behalf of their O or P visa beneficiary.
Should the reader have any further questions about this announcement, or if you have any questions about the O or P visa filing process, please do not hesitate to contact our office to schedule a consultation, and we would be happy to assist further.