Esports Visas

Esports visas and the proper management of an individual’s work authorization is crucial for all professional, semi-professional, and amateur esports teams and organizations as well as for any event, league, and tournament operators. As a result, the Law Office of Justin M. Jacobson, Esq. provides its world-class esports legal experience to assist with securing professional esports visa and other required work authorization. The firm assists in securing esports visas for professional esports talent, including for competitive and semi-competitive players, content creators, streamers, and cosplayers as well as for esports coaches, analysts, scouts, and any other esports team members. We also help obtain and renew esports visas and other work authorizations for esports and gaming on-air broadcast talent, including esports event hosts, MCs, commentators, and casters.

Specifically, any non-U.S. citizen attempting to earn a wage in the United States must obtain proper work authorization in the form of an esports visa, including whenever a non-U.S. citizen player or caster receives a salary from an esports organization or tournament operator as well as when competing for tournament or event winnings. This requirement mandates that professional esports and gaming talent receive an esports visa or other work permit from the U.S.C.I.S. to enable them to work and earn income in the United States. As a result, esports visas are reviewed on a case-by-case basis as the details and requirements for an applicable visa differ for every individual and company. Therefore, it is prudent for an esports team and organization as well as an esports event or league operator to timely investigate and plan for any upcoming esports visas or other related immigration needs.

More information on esports visas for professional gamers, coaches, and casters can be found below.

What is esports law?

Esports law is similar to other talent-focused areas of the law as it encompasses a variety of different legal fields that relate to the individuals and businesses that operate in the esports and professional video game space.

Esports law incorporates many different legal fields including intellectual property law such as right of publicity and associated “name, image, and likeness” (NIL) rights, esports trademarks, copyrights, and the licensing of IP, esports contract law, business law, immigration law including obtaining esports visas, employment and labor law, tax law, as well as digital communications and internet law, such as social media influencer disclosures. There is additional information on these and other related legal topics in Justin M. Jacobson’s first in the industry, “The Essential Guide to the Business & Law of Esports & Professional Video Gaming.”

An esports attorney works with individuals and companies in the esports and gaming space such as professional gamers, streamers, content creators, coaches, casters, VTubers, cosplay talent, and event hosts and analysts. These professionals might also assist a professional esports team or organization, an event organizer or tournament provider, a video game publisher or developer as well as any third-party who works with any of the talent and companies in the esports business such as a merchandise company, a gaming peripheral or hardware company, a fantasy esports platform, an NFT or digital collectible company, a live esports event production entity, or a streaming or broadcast company.

How much does it generally cost for a visa in esports?

The prices and costs associated with securing or renewing an esports visa varies based on the individual and the time requirements. As a result, any interested party should promptly schedule a consultation to explore potential costs and available options for an esports visa for a player, creator, caster, coach, or other team employee.

Why are visas important in esports?

Esports visas for players, broadcast talent, coaches, and other foreign citizens are required to enter the United States for a business or other commercial purpose, including to earn a salary competing as a professional gamer or receiving money for competing in a tournament from a prize pool. Without appropriate work authorization in the form of esports visas, a gamer, caster, or coach may not be permitted to enter the United States for a commercial purpose. As a result, an esports attorney might assist in the esports visa securement process, including the preparation, filing, and renewal of an esports visa petition on behalf of an esports talent, a team, or an event organizer, including obtaining a visa for any esports broadcast talent, professional gamers, coaches, analysts, and other esports team personnel.