This articles discusses What is the International Entrepreneur Parole Program? The International Entrepreneur Parole Program also known as the International Entrepreneur Rule allows a foreign entrepreneur regardless of their country of origin to be granted authorized stay in the United States for up to 30 months (2.5 years) to develop her or his business. The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) does that by using its parole authority that allows the department to exercise discretion and allow certain noncitizens to temporarily enter or remain in the United States. This is different from other programs like the E2 treaty investor which entail either consular processing and the issuance of visa or change of status while in the United States and grants a nonimmigrant status to the applicant upon approval. Also, unlike the E2 treaty investor or EB5 investor green card programs, the International Entrepreneur Rule does not require the entrepreneur to invest his or her own money into the US business.
To find our more information about the top requirements for the International Entrepreneur Parole Program, please visit our article here. The requirements for an entrepreneur to qualify for the International Entrepreneur Parole program are as follows:
- The entrepreneur holds at least a 10% ownership stake in the start-up entity.
- The entrepreneur holds a central and active role in the operations of the start-up.
- The entrepreneur’s knowledge, skills, or experience will substantially assist with the growth and success of the start-up.
- The start-up’s formation occurred in the last five years.
- The start-up will have a significant public benefit.
- The start-up received substantial capital investment for qualified investors or awards in the form of grants from U.S. federal, state or local governmental entity.
To better understand what is the International Entrepreneur Program for the United States, it is important to know how the application process works. In order to apply for parole under the International Entrepreneur Rule, an individual must submit form I-941 Application for Entrepreneur Parole along with supporting documentation and payment of $1,200 application fee and $85 biometric fee to the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). If the application is approved, the entrepreneur will have to visit a U.S. consulate abroad to obtain a travel document also known as a boarding foil. Unlike other programs such as the E-2, E-1 or EB-5 visa program, the applicant cannot change status while in the United States and must travel outside the country to obtain the boarding foil. Upon arrival to the United States, the entrepreneur will appear before U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) officer at the port of entry who will make the final parole determination. Citizens of Canada are not required to obtain a travel document and can appear directly at the U.S.-Canada border to be paroled into the U.S.
Benefits & Conditions
Under the International Entrepreneur Rule, each start-up business can sponsor up to 3 entrepreneurs. An entrepreneur granted parole will be able to work in the United States only for the start-up business. The spouse and children under 21 of the entrepreneur may accompany her or him in the United States by filling form I-131 Application for Travel Document. The entrepreneur’s spouse is also eligible to apply for work authorization in the United States after the parole has been granted. As mentioned above the initial term of the parole is 30 months (2.5 years). The initial stay can be extended for an additional 30 months (2.5 years) if certain conditions are met, for a total stay in the United States of a maximum of 5 years. The entrepreneur is also obligated to report any material changes regarding the start-up business or the entrepreneur’s role with the start-up during the parole period.
Travel Outside the US
To better understand what is the International Entrepreneur Parole Program, it is important to know how you can travel outside of the United States if needed, especially to raise capital and grow the business. Travel outside the United States while on parole under International Entrepreneur Rule can be complicated. Unlike visa programs that allow multiple entries, the parole under International Entrepreneur Rule essentially ends each time the entrepreneur departs the United States. However, DHS has recognized that travel might be important for an entrepreneur to conduct business and attract new investors and capital into the start-up business. In order to travel outside the US, an international entrepreneur will have to apply for advanced parole with the USCIS by filing form I-131 with supporting documentation and can receive travel documents valid for multiple entries. An entrepreneur granted advance parole would be able to travel but each time they re-enter, the CBP officer will have to inspect them and determine whether to grant the parole for the remaining period of his or her initially granted parole period. That creates an extra layer of uncertainty for the entrepreneur as it is not clear what is the inspection process of CBP officers for parole holders. Furthermore, time spent outside the United States while on parole cannot be recaptured and does not extend the 30-month parole period.
How can Malescu Law assist?
The International Entrepreneur Parole Program is a rather new program that U.S. agencies have started implementing recently. Our experienced business and immigration lawyers in Miami, Florida USA are continuously seeking guidance about the requirements and implementation of the International Entrepreneur Program as it becomes available. Our lawyers can assist international entrepreneurs to apply for the International Entrepreneur Parole Program, seek guidance from U.S. agencies on ongoing questions and prepare the application. Contact us today!
Malescu Law P.A. -International Entrepreneur Parole Program