Earlier this week, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) Director Alejandro Mayorkas launched a new initiative called, Entrepreneur Pathways, to assist entrepreneurs who want to start a business and create jobs in the U.S. This is part of the program started by USCIS in October 2011 called Entrepreneurs in Residence (EIR).
The EIR program draws on the industry expertise (in public and private sectors) to strengthen and improve USCIS’s policies and practices relating to job creation of employment-based and high-skilled visa categories. The new Entrepreneur Pathway, is a resource center for entrepreneurs to learn, navigate, and understand the various non-immigrant visa categories that best suits their needs. The Pathway pages include a “getting started” tool which provides a high level overview of the immigration process and a “visa guide” for the Entrepreneurs to decide what visa category they are most likely to use. As Director Mayorkas stated, “[t]hrough our initiative ..we are working to realize our current immigration system’s full potential to attract and retain start-up enterprises that promote innovation and spur job creation in America.”
In addition to the Pathway system, the EIR team has already developed and deployed a training workshop for USCIS employment-based immigration officers that focuses on start-up businesses. A specialized team of immigration officers has also been trained to handle entrepreneur and start-up cases. Vice President of Strategic and Community Development Paul Ford states, “USCIS’s officers and leadership clearly want to deliver quality services to people who want to invest, work, and live in the United States.”
If you have questions about employment or business based immigration, please contact us for a consultation.