Updated January 2020 – Journalists seeking 0-1 visas to the U.S. are required by the Department of Homeland Security to submit opinion letters from The NewsGuild-CWA on the suitability of their request.

The visa application requires petitioners to contact the labor union with jurisdiction over work they seek to perform to obtain an advisory opinion on whether the visa should be granted.

To qualify for an O-1 visa in journalism, applicants must be journalists or other news professionals. Applicants must demonstrate extraordinary achievement evidenced by a degree of skill and recognition significantly above that ordinarily encountered to the extent the person is recognized as outstanding, notable or leading in the journalism field. Visit the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services site to review the qualifications.

Steps for Submitting Requests for Review

To request a review, please send a synopsis of the work you are seeking, a summary of your qualifications and the completed USCIS application to guild@cwa-union.org. Do not include the complete body of work supporting the application with the initial request for review.

After an initial review, eligible applicants will be invited to send documentation and payment, providing the work to be performed is within the Guild’s jurisdiction. If the Guild determines during the initial review that the request is not within the Guild’s jurisdiction, applicants will be notified.

Eligible petitioners will then be required to submit all supporting documentation (e.g., proof of awards, reviews, articles, and testimonials); a valid copy of the petitioner’s passport; a copy of the I-129 petition form; and a copy of the employment contract. Please include all materials and supporting documentation that are provided to immigration officials, including, but not limited to, a broad sample of the petitioner’s work in the U.S., for international publications or websites.

A hard copy of the documentation should be sent to The NewsGuild, 501 Third Street NW, Washington DC 20001, along with the fee for this service, which is $550 USD for a three- to four-week turnaround.

Petitions will not be reviewed unless all steps have been completed. Petitions are processed on a first-come, first-served basis. Please allow for the full processing time regarding your USCIS deadline. There is no option to expedite.

If you have questions, please contact: Dominique Edmondson at (202) 434-7177 or guild@cwa-union.org.