USCIS published a Proposed Rule on August 31, 2016 which would grant parole to “entrepreneurs of start-up entities.” Parole allows entry into the United States without obtaining a visa, and potentially could simplify the immigration experience for qualifying entrepreneurs. There is no anticipated date for when this Proposed Rule would become a Final Rule, and when entrepreneurs could take advantage of its new benefits, but it is hoped that a Final Rule will take effect in 2017.
Entrepreneur parole is intended for U.S. start-ups with major growth potential and an economic impact that would substantially benefit the U.S. economy, such as creating numerous jobs. Small businesses likely will not qualify, and family investment is severely limited.
The entrepreneur must file Form I-941 and supporting evidence with USCIS and pay a fee of $1200. Parole will be granted for a 2-year period, and unlimited permission to travel (exit/re-enter the U.S.) will be given. The entrepreneur will automatically obtain work authorization to work only at the start-up entity. Spouses and children must apply separately with Form I-131, and spouses can obtain work authorization by separately filing Form I-765. Re-parole can be obtained, but there is a maximum of 5 years total under parole. The household income must remain at or above 400% of the federal poverty line. There is a limit of 3 entrepreneurs per start-up entity. Parole is discretionary on a case-by-case basis.
This is a general synopsis of some, but not all, of the proposed qualification requirements. This is not a Final Rule, but if you are interested in obtaining entrepreneur parole once the Final Rule is published, please consult with Hill & Piibe to determine if parole status would suit your short- and long-term plans.
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