Key Elements of DHS Proposed International Entrepreneur Rule
Oct 24, 2016
Dallas, TX (Law Firm Newswire) October 24, 2016 – The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has issued a proposed rule that would help international founders of startup companies stay in the United States on a temporary basis. The proposal is intended to address a gap in the options available for foreign entrepreneurs who want to start a business in the U.S.
The proposed entrepreneur rule would use the mechanism of “parole” – temporary permission to remain in the United States – the authority for which is provided by the Immigration and Nationality Act. DHS may parole a foreign national into the U.S. temporarily for “significant public benefit” or “urgent humanitarian reasons.” Under the proposed rule, an entrepreneur must demonstrate that his or her role as a founder of a startup entity will provide a significant public benefit to the United States.
To qualify for parole, applicants must possess a substantial ownership interest and an active role in a business that was formed in the United States in the three years preceding the application, and must receive a qualified investment of $345,000 or more from a qualified investor in the year preceding the application.
“The Administration has made a comprehensive effort to find an administrative remedy to permit foreign national entrepreneurs a vehicle to come to and remain in the United States albeit for a limited period,” said Stewart Rabinowitz, an immigration attorney with the Dallas, Texas firm of Rabinowitz & Rabinowitz, P.C. “The proposed rule, while laudable, lacks the imprimatur of Congressional action. The comment period was open until October 17, 2016, for suggested improvements.”
Supporters of the proposed rule say that current U.S. immigration options do not meet the needs of international entrepreneurs who wish to start companies, and the United States is therefore missing out on the jobs and revenue that those businesses could create. The rule would allow an initial grant of parole for two years, which could be extended for up to three years if the company demonstrates a significant public benefit by showing an increase in job creation, investment or revenue. While the proposed rule will benefit foreign entrepreneurs, it does not provide a path to permanent residence. Only new legislation could do that
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