Rapid Growth, Job Creation Key in Foreign Entrepreneur Rule

Entrepreneurs Rapid Job GrowthRapid business growth and job creation are key elements in the International Entrepreneur Rule, which the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) published in January 17, for foreign nationals growing their companies within the United States. The rule is intended to spur the nation’s economy through increased capital spending, innovation and job creation.

The final rule addresses DHS requirements under which U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) officers can use their parole authority to grant a period of authorized stay in the country to foreign entrepreneurs. The initial period of the authorized stay under the rule is 30 months with the possibility of an additional 30-month extension.

Applicants who want consideration under the rule must meet these criteria:

  • A substantial ownership interest in a start-up entity that was created within the past five years in the United States where a substantial potential for rapid growth and job creation exist
  • A central and active role in the start up and is well-positioned to substantially assist with the growth and success of the business
  • A role that will result in a significant public benefit to the United States by any of these:
    • Showing significant capital investment from certain qualified U.S. investors with established records of successful investments;
    • Showing significant economic development, research and development, or job creation grants or awards from federal, state or local government entities that regularly provide such awards or grants to startup entities
    • Showing at least partial compliance with either of the above two requirements as well as additional reliable and compelling evidence of the startup entity’s substantial potential for rapid growth and job creation

Up to three entrepreneurs and their spouses and children per startup entity are eligible for stays under the final rule. Those entrepreneurs who are granted stays are eligible to work only for their startup businesses, though their spouses can apply for work authorization in the United States. The entrepreneurs’ children aren’t eligible for work authorization.

The new rule becomes effective July 17, 2017, which is 180 days after its publication in the Federal Register.

According to DHS, an estimated 2,940 entrepreneurs will be eligible under this rule annually.