Can I Re-Use an Old Union Consult Letter for a Visa Petition?
By Brian Taylor Goldstein, Esq.
Dear Law and Disorder:
Last year I filed a P-1 petition for a group. I obtained a consult letter from AFM. When I filed a petition for their 2013 tour, the USCIS said I needed to get a new consult letter. I thought that union opinion letters are good for 3 years? Did that rule change?
No, nothing’s changed. There’s just a bit of confusion, that’s all. Union consultations for O-1B petitions are good for 2 years provided the artist is performing within 2 years of the date of the original union consultation letter. If that’s the case, then you don’t need to get a new one. However, this has never been the rule with P-1 petitions or any other category: O-2, P-1S, etc.
So, if you obtained an O-1B for an opera singer and you have an AGMA consult letter dated October 1, 2012, then that same consult letter can be used for subsequent O-1B petitions for the singer’s subsequent engagements through October 1, 2014. You just need to be able to provide a copy of the prior consultation letter. Even if the original consult letter was written for a different petitioner, you can still use it. It’s the identity of the artist that counts. However, if you obtained a P-1 for a group and you have an AFM consult letter dated October 1, 2012, then any and all new petitions will require new consult letters.
In your case, I assume you received a Request for Evidence (RFE) from USCIS. You just need to get a new consultation letter from AFM and attach it to your RFE response. That should do the trick.
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Tags: 3 years, afm, agma, Brian Taylor, consultation letter, consultations, engagements, Goldstein, petitioner, rfe, uscis, visa petition