Exciting News for Foreign Entrepreneurs: The International Entrepreneur Rule Is Back!

However, on December 1, Judge James Boasberg of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia ordered the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) to begin accepting applications for the program in his decision in National Venture Capital Association v. Duke. Prior to Judge Boasberg’s decision, DHS attempted to delay implementation of the rule by postponing its implementation until March of 2018 so it could gather public comments on a proposal to rescind the rule altogether.

The main issue that led to Judge Boasberg’s decision arose when DHS delayed implementation of the rule without first holding a public notice and comment period on whether to institute the delay. According to the plaintiffs who filed the suit, including the National Venture Capital Association and other plaintiffs representing foreign entrepreneurs, DHS violated administrative procedures by delaying implementation of the rule, six days before it was to go into effect, without first soliciting public comment on whether to implement the delay.

In siding with the plaintiffs, Judge Boasberg rejected DHS’s argument that it had good cause to forego the public comment period. Judge Boasberg stated that “the agency’s proffered reasons for bypassing notice and comment easily fall short of good cause,” and that “Defendants fail to show any real ‘confusion’ that required bypassing notice and comment.” In addition, Judge Boasberg also refused to issue a stay of the International Entrepreneur Rule’s immediate implementation, stating that it was not justified and would “simply remedy the agency’s delay with more delay.”

What is the International Entrepreneur Rule?

The International Entrepreneur Rule, which was issued by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services prior to President Obama leaving office, would provide international entrepreneurs with an opportunity to develop and run a business in the United States. The Rule would permit around 3,000 international entrepreneurs annually to reside in the United States for the purposes of developing and operating a business that offered a significant public benefit. To qualify, the entrepreneur would have to demonstrate that their business promotes public interest in ways that include hiring U.S. workers and contributing to the U.S. economy.

Under the International Entrepreneur Rule, the entrepreneur and qualifying family members would be admitted through a process known as “parole.” Unlike other forms of immigration to the United States, parole involves immigration officials permitting an applicant to enter the United States, without a visa, for a specific purpose (this status is not a visa). In the case of the International Entrepreneur Rule, the initial grant of stay would be for 30 months, with the possibility of an additional 30 month-extension.

Currently, the International Entrepreneur Rule is one of the only options available for many foreign entrepreneurs to develop their businesses in the United States, without prior work abroad for the company, or significant investment. While there have been multiple attempts in Congress to create a new entrepreneur-focused visa category, these attempts have thus far been unsuccessful.  Therefore, this program is the best bet for recent grads who want to stay in the US to work on their funded business, or for successful entrepreneurs to break new ground on their business idea in the United States.

What’s Next?

Given the uncertain future of the International Entrepreneur Rule, it is advisable that anyone interested in the program act quickly, before this status potentially changes again.

To find out of you qualify for the International Parole Rule, schedule a consultation with The Grady Firm attorneys today.

About The Grady Firm, P.C.

The Grady Firm, P.C. attorneys help individuals, families, employees, business owners, and investors obtain non-immigrant and immigrant visas, as well and Green Cards and citizenship based on family relationships, investment, or employment.  In addition, The Grady Firm attorneys help foreign entrepreneurs establish a U.S. presence, form a corporate entity, and obtain the appropriate visas for their owners and employees.

To schedule a complimentary 15-minute consultation with our immigration attorneys, call +1 (323) 450-9010, or schedule an appointment online.

*This article is for informational purposes only, and does not constitute legal advice or create an attorney-client relationship. This article does not make any guarantees as to the outcome of a particular matter, as each matter has its own set of circumstances and must be evaluated individually by a licensed attorney.

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