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Guilde des musiciens et des musiciennes du Québec
Montréal / 514.842.2866

Visa P2 & Work permit

The AFM, along with many other, US-based arts organizations and businesses are lobbying against such a high increase (upwards of 251% - from $460 to $1615). These lobbying efforts started mid-January. See here the message posted by AFM President Hair on February 10th: AFM Opposes Proposed USCIS Visa Increases - American Federation of Musicians.

At this time, the visa increases are proposed, not yet approved/implemented. 

Aside, this is not just directed at musicians or the arts/entertainment community.  There are Service/Visa-wide increases proposed, covering many sectors of employment.  This is also International in scope, as all visa classifications, covering musicians from across the globe would be impacted.

Getting a Visa P2 | Musical performance in the USA

Did you know that being a member of the GMMQ makes it easier to obtain a temporary work permit in the United States (P2 Visa)?

As a member of the GMMQ, local 406, you are a member of the AFM. The American Federation of Musicians of the United States and Canada (AFM) is recognized by United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) as an authorized petitioner for temporary work permits on behalf of AFM member musicians.  Therefore, Canadian members who wish to perform (work) in the United States may apply for non-immigrant work permits through AFM. The AFM provides the exact same level of service as immigration lawyers or visa service agents.

The AFM provides immigration consulting services to members and non-members alike. However, petitioning for P2 Work Permits is a member-specific service, processed by AFM’s Canadian Office on behalf of Canadian AFM members exclusively.

To obtain these visas, musicians should contact the GMMQ's Member Service.

Catherine Audet-Ménard - Member Services
Tel: 514 842-2866, ext. 245
1 800 363-6688

Please note the new deadlines for processing your application when planning your tour. Allow 90 to 120 days and pay the requested fee.

Expedited processing is possible, but you must send your application between 20 to 30 days in advance and pay an additional fee required by the immigration service to benefit from this priority processing.

Send Completed P2 Application packages to:
Attn: Artist Immigration Department
American Federation of Musicians
#202 - 150 Ferrand Drive,Toronto,
ON, M3C 3E5, Canada

To obtain a P2 Visa, you must:

1.Download the instructions, the checklist,
2. Fill in the following forms :
-Visa P2 : part 1 to 4
-Visa P2 : part 5
-Visa P2 : part 6 (one musicien)
-Visa P2 : part 6 (2 musicians and more)
-Tour Itinenary

Other reference documents

1) Travelling Contract | T2C-1
2) Border Info Document
3) CATSA | Tips for traveling safely with an instrument

Please note that there are deadlines to get your visa in time.

Please Note: The AFM Administration fee for P2 Processing is increasing effective January 1, 2024.

For Regular Processing the fee will increase from $120 CAD for the first person to $125 CAD. Adding additional musicians/technicians will remain at $25 CAD per person.

When changing processing type from Regular Processing to Premium Processing Change fee of $25 CAD will be required. 

For Premium Processing, the AFM Administration fee will increase from $120 for the first person to $150 CAD. Adding additional musicians/technicians will remain at $25 CAD per person.

The P2 Replacement Letter fee is increasing from $45 CAD to $50 CAD. 

Work Permit Policy | For the Quebec province

1.    Application of the work permit policy

  • 1.1. This policy is effective as of September 1, 2010.
  • 1.2. This policy applies to performances governed by the Minimum working conditions for stage and background music, excluding rehearsals.
  • 1.3. If there are no provisions governing work permits in a collective agreement, this policy shall be applied to performances rendered under said agreement, excluding rehearsals.

2.     Obtaining a work permit

  • 2.1. Eligibility criteria for obtaining a concurrent work permit :
    • 2.1.1. A musician who is a Canadian citizen or permanent resident of Canada, residing in Québec AND ;
    • 2.1.2. A musician who has never been a member of the GMMQ OR ;
    • 2.1.3. A musician who resigned while in good standing for more than 4 years OR ;
    • 2.1.4. A musician who has been expelled for more than 4 years.
  • 2.2. Eligibility criteria for obtaining a non-concurrent permit:
    • 2.2.1. A musician under suspension OR ;
    • 2.2.2. A musician who resigned while in good standing for less than 4 years OR ;
    • 2.2.3. A musician who has been expelled for less than 4 years OR ;
    • 2.2.4. A foreign musician who is not a member of another local chapter of the AFM OR ;
    • 2.2.5. A musician who is eligible for a concurrent permit but who, by choice, prefers a non-concurrent permit.
  • 2.3. The musician or the producer must submit a permit application, with all the necessary information included, to the Member Services department at least five days before the performance.

3.    Use of concurrent work permits to become a regular member

  • 3.1 At any time, the musician may apply the amounts paid for concurrent work permits obtained during the preceding 24 months toward payment of registration or readmission fees, the administrative costs for the permits, and the annual dues for the current year.
  • 3.2 The maximum amount that can be credited corresponds to the sum of the annual dues and administrative costs for the permit in force. Any accumulated amount that exceeds this sum shall not be applicable.
  • 3.3 If the maximum amount that can be credited is not fully used for the current year, the balance may be applied to the following year, provided that the musician immediately pays the difference for the applicable annual dues for the whole calendar year. If the aforementioned difference is not paid, the balance will revert to zero.
  • 3.4 Once the musician has used the maximum amount that can be credited towards payment of his or her dues, the balance for his or her concurrent work permit will revert to zero.

4.    Cost of work permits

  • 4.1 The rate for a concurrent work permit is $30.00 per performance.
  • 4.2 The rate for a non-concurrent work permit is $50.00 per performance.
  • 4.3 For each calendar year (January 1 to December 31), a musician who needs a permit shall pay the amount applicable to it until it reaches a cumulative amount of $410. Once this amount is reached, he will be able to work until the end of the year as a "permit holding" musician without paying additional permits.

Work permit policy (revised July 15, 2014)

design : SYCLONE