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New Rule Could Welcome International Entrepreneurs to the U.S.

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On August 26, 2016, the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (“USCIS”) released an advanced version of its proposed rule, the “International Entrepreneur Rule” (“IER”), which is set to be published for comment in the Federal Register. If the proposed rulemaking is successful, the IER would welcome certain international entrepreneurs to the U.S. on parole (i.e. temporary permission to enter the U.S. for a specific purpose and duration) to start or increase their businesses in the country.
Under the IER, entrepreneurs eligible for parole include those who:

  • Have a significant (i.e. at least 15%) ownership interest in the startup company;
  • Have an active role in the company’s operations;
  • Formed their startup in the U.S. within the past 3 years;
  • Have a startup with substantial and demonstrated potential for job creation in the U.S., as well as rapid business growth. This can be evidenced by:
    • Having at least $345,000.00 of investment capital from qualified U.S. investors with successful investment records;
    • Having at least $100,000.00 of awards or grants from government entities at the federal, state, or local levels; or
    • Having other reliable and compelling evidence of the startup’s potential for job creation and rapid business growth, in addition to partially satisfying one or both of the other 2 mentioned evidentiary criteria.
If an entrepreneur meets all of the above-mentioned qualifications, they may be granted an initial parole stay for up to 2 years to start or increase their startup company in the U.S. After the initial 2 years, the entrepreneur may be eligible for an additional 3 years of re-parole, if the entrepreneur and their company continue to provide a public benefit to the U.S. by way of substantial increases in capital investment, revenue, or job creation.
Once published in the Federal Register, there will be a 45-day public comment period on the IER. After all comments are considered, the final rule will be published in the Register. Until then, the IER is not in effect. We will provide an update once the final IER becomes effective.
Thinking of investing in the U.S.? Other options may already be available to you. GoffWilson can assist in making your entrepreneurial dream a reality! Contact our office today for more information.
Filed under:Immigration Law, Immigration Reform