Question from Phil,
Hi there I am on an O1B visa and have been volunteering at a local sports team. They are now wanting to pay me for my work. Is this outside the boundaries of my visa? If so, is it in my interest to ask them to pay me through my sponsor? Or is there an option to set up an entertainment business and have money be paid through that?
O-1 visa is employer-specific and therefore you cannot work for another employer without filing another petition. If your original O-1 petition was filed by an agent, then your agent must submit an amended petition if you want to change employer (or work for additional employer) assuming you will work in your field of ability in this new position. Setting up a new company will probably not help because it does not change O-1 visa's restriction on who you can work for.
Will your new position also be in the motion picture/television industry? If not, O-1B is probably not the right type of visa and you may not work for your new employer without changing your status entirely. It is recommended that you consult with an attorney to fully explore your options.
Please note that the above answer is general in nature and does not constitute legal advice.
Answer provided by:
Ellis, Li & McKinstry PLLC