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Skilled Immigrants Encouraged to Start Companies and Create Jobs


USCIS has joined the Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano to outline a series of policies, operations, and outreach efforts to help fuel the United States’ economy and stimulate investment. The goal of these initiatives is to help realize the full potential of US immigration laws in order to attract the most innovative and creative minds from around the world. Moreover, these polices are directed at encouraging these individuals to contribute their talents, skills, and ideas to fuel the US economy and create job growth.

As part of these initiatives, entrepreneurs may obtain employment-based second preference (EB-2) immigrant visas if they satisfy existing requirements. However, they may also qualify for a National Interest Waiver under the EB-2 immigrant visa category if they can demonstrate that their business endeavors will be in the interest of the United States.

Further, entrepreneurs with an ownership stake in their own companies, including sole employees, may be able to obtain H-1B visas from their companies. This may be done by showing the company has the independent right to control their employment, thereby establishing the requisite employer-employee relationship. USCIS has updated existing FAQs to clarify this issue.

USCIS is also enhancing the EB-5 immigrant investor program by transforming the intake and review process. USCIS will also expand the availability of the premium processing service to additional employment-based visa categories.

The Office of Public Engagement will begin hosting a series of meetings to discuss issues of importance to foreign entrepreneurs and start-up companies. The first of these events will be held on August 11, 2011.

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