H1B3 Fashion Model

An H-1B3 is a visa for a fashion model who has national or international acclaim or recognition, coming to be employed in a position requiring such a level of acclaim and recognition.

The petition must be filed by a U.S. employer or agent. Evidence must be submitted to establish that the beneficiary will be performing services, events or productions of a distinguished reputation, including:

  1. Documentary evidence (such as certifications, affidavits, reviews) to establish the beneficiary is a fashion model or distinguished merit and ability. Affidavits submitted by present or former employers or recognized experts must set forth the expertise of the affiant and the manner in which the affiant acquired such information; and
  2. Copies of any written contracts between the petitioner and the beneficiary or, if there is no written agreement, a summary of the terms of the oral agreement under which the beneficiary will be employed.

The model must be prominent in the field and the position must require prominence. Prominence means a “high level of achievement as evidenced by a degree of skill and recognition substantially above that ordinarily encountered … The person must be renowned, leading or well known.”

Agency that books models under contract and receives fees for fashion runway shows is not an employer.

Beneficiary’s Requirements.  Documentation of any two of the following:

  • National or international recognition evidenced by critical reviews, articles, news stories;
  • Performing for employers that have a distinguished reputation;
  • Recognition by experts or critics;
  • Commands high salary in relation to others.

This category does not include support occupations such as hair stylists and make-up artists who may apply through O-1 or H-2B categories. Fashion models may also qualify under O-1 as extraordinary persons in business but not in the arts.