A federal judge ruled that the Trump administration can no longer delay the International Entrepreneur Rule. The judge ordered the administration to begin accepting applications under the rule, which allows startup founders to come to the U.S. to build their companies.
The National Venture Capital Association (NVCA) along with entrepreneurs and companies sued the federal government in September for illegally delaying the International Entrepreneur Rule. The lawsuit contended that the Trump administration violated the federal Administrative Procedures Act’s notice-and-comment requirement by failing to allow public comments before deciding to delay the rule.
Finalized during the last few days of the Obama administration, the rule allows foreign entrepreneurs to receive parole—or a temporary stay in the U.S. if they can show they have created startups that have the potential for rapid business growth, job creation, and innovation.
The rule was slated to go into effect on July 17, 2017, but never took effect. Less than a week before, the Trump administration delayed the implementation of the rule to consider doing away with it altogether. At the time, the administration stated that cancellation of the rule was “highly likely.”
When Can I File for Parole?
The answer to that question is tricky. In his ruling, Judge James Boasberg of the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia ordered the Department of Homeland Security to begin accepting applications for parole from international entrepreneurs.
However, no official application currently exists for parole under the International Entrepreneur Rule. And few—if any—startup founders may actually receive parole. That’s because:
- The Trump administration last month began following the appropriate formal steps to rescind the rule. A draft order to eliminate the rule is currently under review by the administration and will be published in the Federal Register shortly, according to the San Francisco Chronicle.
- U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services is under no requirement to process parole applications within a certain time frame.
What Should I Do?
We are advising our clients to consider using this new strategy. But keep in mind that parole is still in a legally difficult position. However, the more people who apply, the more Congress will see the great need for a startup visa.
The Alcorn Immigration Law team is closely monitoring the status of the International Entrepreneur Rule. Given the uncertainty of the rule’s future, contact us for a consultation about immigration options. We support immigration for innovation. Other immigration options may be open to you.