Foreign Entrepreneur Parole Rule for Applicants who are Out-of-Status
On January 17, 2017, the USCIS published the final rule for authorizing parole status to foreign entrepreneurs in Federal Register, Vol. 82, No. 10, pg 5238, et.al. This final rule becomes effective on July 17, 2017, which means that the USCIS will start accepting applications submitted on Form I-
Requirements for Foreign Entrepreneur Parole ApplicantsThe requirements for a foreign entrepreneur parole visa include the following:
(1) Creation of a US business entity within 5 years immediately preceding the filing of the parole request;
(2) The US business entity has potential for rapid growth and job creation;
(3) The alien has to possess 10% equity ownership in the business entity and has a central and active role in its business operations and future growth (i.e. the alien's knowledge, skills and experience would substantially assist the entity in conducting and growing its business in the US);
(4) Within the prior 18 months preceding the filing of the parole request, the business entity must be able to show any of the following criteria:
(a) Received investments of capital totaling $250,000 or more from established US investors (such as venture capital firms or angel investors); or
(b) Received $100,000 or more in awards or grants from government entities (local, state or federal) which provide such funds to US businesses for economic, research and development, or job creation purposes; or
(c) Received less than the minimum funding levels stated above but is able to provide reliable and compelling evidence that it would provide a significant public benefit to the United States.
Additional Information on Foreign Entrepreneur Parole RuleThe USCIS has discretionary authority to grant parole status to an alien for up to 2.5 years if the above requirements are met. The parole status can be extended if certain operating requirements are met.
For each business entity, there can be no more than 3 entrepreneur parole requests granted.
This new rule for foreign entrepreneur parole status can be extended to applicants regardless of their country of citizenship, such as India and China which do not have a treaty with the US through which they can apply for an E-2 investor visa or E-1 trader visa.
Under this rule, applicants who are out-of-status would be able to apply for foreign entrepreneur parole status without having to meet the minimum investment requirements of $500,000 to $1 million required for an EB-5 immigrant investor visa, known as the "millionaire" visa. Under the current state of immigration law, being granted parole status itself will not waive the 3-year bar* and 5-year bar** of inadmissibility for out-of-status applicants who are interested applying for lawful permanent resident status.
(* due to being out-of-status for more than 90 days).
(** due to being out-of-status for more than 180 days).