B1/OCS visas are granted for crew working on board foreign owned/operated vessels in on the US Outer Continental Shelf (OCS). In order for a crewman to obtain a B1/OCS visa - their employer needs to provide them with an "manning exemption letter," which is a letter of concurrence or letter of determination from the US Coast Guard (USCG), confirming that the vessel or rig meets the foreign ownership requirement as laid out in 33 CFR 121.20.
To get this letter - an application is made to the USCG and must include the following information:
1) Project Scope (Type of Work, Location, and Duration)
2) Vessel Information (Vessel Name, Vessel IMO #, Vessel Type, Registry, Classification Document)
3) Contracts, Subcontracts and/or Bareboat Charter Agreements that affect ownership or control
4) Parent Company Public Trading and Registration Documents
5) Public Trading and Registration Documents for All Companies in Chain of Ownership
6) The identity and nationality of the parent company’s corporate president or chief executive officer
7) The identity and nationality of the parent company’s chairman and members of the board of directors
8) The identity and nationality of the parent company’s principal shareholders
9) The identity and nationality of officers of companies in the chain of ownership or control
10) A certified statement that addresses the national manning requirements found in 33 CFR 141.5(b)(3).
If you're looking at working in the United States and need assistance navigating this process - please don't hesitate to reach out
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