Guiding The Immigrant-Entrepreneur
Many Ways Of Coming To America
Immigrants have always played an important role in the American economy, and there’s something inherently entrepreneurial about leaving your home to start a new life in another country. Perhaps that is why immigrants tend to start businesses at a disproportionately higher rate than native-born Americans. Immigrants have a long history of starting successful businesses in the United States. Did you know that immigrants have created big employment creators? Immigrants have accounted for growth in owners of “Main Street” businesses such as restaurants, retailers, dry-cleaning services and beauty salons.
1. “Got Cash” – Alien Investor – EB-5 immigrant visa that asks you to invest $1 million in a U.S. business. If that business is in rural area, you only need to invest $500,000.
2. “Got Skills” – EB-2 (C) visa – Professionals holding an advanced degree (beyond a baccalaureate degree), or a baccalaureate degree and at least five years progressive experience in the profession. Persons with exceptional abil ity in the sciences, arts, or business. Exceptional ability means having a degree of expertise significantly above that ordinarily encountered in the sciences, arts, or business. Outstanding professors and researchers with at least three years’ experience in teaching or research, who are recognized internationally. Multinational managers or executives who have been employed for at least one of the three preceding years by the overseas affiliate, parent, subsidiary, or branch of the U.S. employer. The applicant’s employment outside of the U.S. must have been in a managerial or executive capacity, and the applicant must be coming to work in a managerial or executive capacity. The prospective employer must provide a job offer and file an Immigrant Petition for Alien Worker, Form I-140, with the USCIS.
3. “Got Connections” – E-2 Treaty Investors – visas are for citizens of countries with which the United States maintains treaties of commerce and navigation. For a list of participating countries, select Treaty Countries.
4. “Got Status” – O-1 visa is not just for artists anymore. This visa is for persons with exceptional abilities, including abilities in doing business. O-1 visas are allotted to a more elite crowd: those who can prove to U.S. immigration officials that they are the very top in their fields. You will need a U.S. employer to sponsor you. Hopefully that employer is an amazing startup you want to work for.
5. “Got Prospects” – L1 visas you need to be an executive or a top manager of a company that has offices in your country and in the U.S. You need to have worked at that foreign office for at least a year during that last three years. And they need to be sending you to the U.S. If the company does not have a U.S. office yet, you can be the one who opens it. the L1B kind is where you are not an executive, but you have some specialized knowledge. if the company sending you to the United States is not the one you ultimately want to work for, you will want to jump ship sooner or late. Many people have.
6. “Got a Job” – H1B visa. This visa is for temporary employees. There are a lot of requirements such as labor certifications, caps on the number of visas, etc. If you have been offered a position that you do not love, but want to be an entrepreneur, use the time while you are on H1B to find the startup you actually want to work for.
7. “Got Game” – B-1 visa is a temporary business visa. It is short-term, only 3-6 months. You can extend it once by another 6 months, totaling 12 months in the U.S. The downside is that you cannot work on this visa. But you can participate in short-tem training, settle an estate, convention, negotiate and network, etc.