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The Senate release their draft immigration reform bill on April 16, 2013. The bill is titled the “Border Security, Economic Opportunity, and Immigration Modernization Act” (S. 744)”

The Bill creates two entrepreneur visas: one is a nonimmigrant visa (entitles an individual to stay in the U.S. for a finite period of time), the other is an immigrant visa (entitles a person to become a lawful permanent resident of the United States.) A summary of the requirements for these new proposed visa is below.

Sec. 4801. NONIMMIGRANT INVEST VISAS.

Creates an INVEST nonimmigrant category (“X” visa) for a “qualified entrepreneur” who, in the three years before application:

  • Has had venture capital or other investors devote $100,000 to the alien’s business; or
  • The alien’s business has resulted in the creation of no fewer than three jobs and generated $250,000 in annual revenue.

Extensions of three years may be authorized, and a waiver of the performance requirements is permitted in consultation with the Commerce Department.

Sec. 4802. INVEST IMMIGRANT VISA.

Creates a new §203(b)(6) (EB-6) immigrant investor visa, capped at 10,000 per year, for “qualified entrepreneur” aliens, defined as an alien:

  • With a significant ownership in a U.S. business;
  • Who is employed as a senior executive in the business; and
  • Who had a significant role in the founding or early-stage growth of the enterprise.

The alien must have resided in the U.S. for at least two years in lawful status; in the three years prior to filing:

  • Have a significant ownership in a business that has created at least five jobs and has received $500,000 in venture capital or other investments; or
  • Has created five jobs and generated $750,000 in annual revenues in the two years prior to filing.

Relaxed job creation, investment attraction, and revenue generation requirements are afforded an alien with an advanced STEM degree.

If and until these visas are passed, entrepreneurs must find an immigration solution in our existing immigration framework. To learn more about current options for entrepreneurs, click here. Entrepreneurs