The U.S. Entrepreneur Parole is a temporary permit to live and work in the United States. Through the International Entrepreneur Rule (IER), the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is able to use its parole authority to grant a period of authorized stay 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.
This program allows entrepreneurs to stay or relocate to the United States for up to five years to help their startup business grow. Ultimately, the company’s goal should be to create jobs in the United States.
Unlike visas that require you to work in a specific field, the international entrepreneur parole program is open to all professional fields. It is the applicant’s responsibility to demonstrate how much benefit the startup’s growth will bring to the U.S. economy and the number of jobs it will create.
Startup entrepreneurs are eligible for “parole,” for an initial 30-month period which allows them to live in the United States with their families and grow their businesses. Although it isn’t a traditional visa, per say, founders at companies that have received grants or investments from the United States are still able to work in the U.S. without the need for an H-1B, O-1A, or other visa or green card.
Entrepreneurs granted parole will only be able to work for their new company. The foreign entrepreneur’s spouse and children may also be eligible for parole. While spouses are eligible to seek work authorization once they are in the United States as parolees, children are not. Up to three entrepreneurs per start-up firm may be awarded IER parole.
To be eligible for parole under the IEPP, applicants must meet the following requirements:
⦁ Have a central and active involvement in a start-up in the United States founded during the last five years;
⦁ Have at least a 10% equity share in the startup; and
⦁ Show that, within the 18 months before the IEPP application, the start-up received either:
⦁ A minimum investment of $250,000 from one or more qualified U.S. investors; or
⦁ a minimum of $100,000 in government prizes or subsidies.
The Entrepreneur Parole can be a great way for entrepreneurs from around the world to grow their businesses in the United States.
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