Attention US Investors and Foreign Entrepreneurs – A New Opportunity is Now Available!

The International Entrepreneur Rule (IER) provides a new avenue to an unlimited number of international entrepreneurs.  The delay of the effective date of this Rule by the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) was vacated on December 1, 2017 by the US District Court for the U.S. District of Columbia in National Venture Capital Association v. Duke. Under the IER, DHS may use its parole authority to grant a period of authorized stay, on a case-by-case basis, to foreign entrepreneurs who demonstrate that their stay in the United States would provide a significant public benefit through their business venture and that they merit a favorable exercise of discretion.

Anyone who qualifies under this Rule will be eligible to work only for their start-up business. The spouses and children of the foreign entrepreneur may also be eligible for parole and work authorization once they enter the United States. IER parole may be granted for up to three entrepreneurs per start-up entity.

The following is a summary of the criteria to qualify for admission under the IER:

The individual applicant applying under the Rule for parole must:

1. Possess a substantial ownership interest in a start-up entity created within the past five years in the United States that has substantial potential for rapid growth and job creation. Substantial ownership may be defined as at least a 10% ownership interest.

2. Have a central and active role in the start-up entity such that they are well-positioned to substantially assist with the growth and success of the business.

3. Will provide a significant public benefit to the United States based on their role as an entrepreneur of the start-up entity by showing that:

a. The start-up entity has received a significant investment of capital from certain qualified U.S. investors with established records of successful investments;

b. The start-up entity has received significant awards or grants for economic development, research and development, or job creation (or other types of grants or awards typically given to start-up entities) from federal, state, or local government entities that regularly provide such awards or grants to start-up entities; or

c. They partially meet either or both of the previous two requirements and provide additional reliable and compelling evidence of the start-up entity’s substantial potential for rapid growth and job creation.

4. Otherwise merit a favorable exercise of discretion.

This is a tremendous opportunity for US investors funding startups of foreign nationals.  This affords both the US investor and the foreign nationals the opportunity to work together in the US freely allowing for growth, expansion, and development of the foreign national’s business plan, and in turn the optimization of the US investment.  There is no requirement of investment by the foreign national and the required US investment can be as low as $100,000 (from government grants) or $250,000 (from US established investors).  If an applicant cannot meet either of the threshold US investment amounts there is also an alternative under which an applicant can provide additional reliable and compelling evidence that they would provide a significant public benefit to the United States (compelling validation of the entity’s substantial potential for rapid growth and job creation).

The applicant must apply using Form I-941, Application for Entrepreneur Parole.  The filing fee is currently $1,200 plus a biometric fee of $85.  Any spouse or children will be required to file Form I-131 along with a filing fee of $575 and biometric fee of $85.  If everything is approved, and the entrepreneur and spouse are paroled into the United States the spouse can then apply for work authorization using Form I-765.

If you want further information or want to see if you can qualify to obtain this new benefit please contact us immediately!

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