Best Startup Visas For Immigrating Business Owners

by Startups Published on: 19 August 2022 Last Updated on: 20 August 2022

Startup Visas

The US offers a propitious landscape for business ventures to thrive and augment their operational reach. It stands among the top 3 countries globally for entrepreneurs. Thus, numerous startup owners and entrepreneurial individuals apply to get a business visa to leverage the business-friendly American market.

The country continues to embrace with open arms great business opportunities that contribute to employment generation and its overall economic progress. Immigrants have already played a fundamental role in developing the US entrepreneurial domain.

As per noted reports, the number of foreign-origin business owners in the country exceeds 3.2 million, which makes up more than 22 percent of the total entrepreneur population. That’s why the US has a series of startup visa alternatives for business owners seeking to immigrate to the land of their dreams.

As a foreign entrepreneur, if you are planning to commence your startup venture or wish to spread your business wings to the United States, you must know some of the best startup visas available. Proper research and guidance regarding the available visa options can help you select the best resort for your business entity.

Major Categories Of Startup Visas For Immigrating Business Owners

Immigrating Business Owners

Prominently, the US startup visas for overseas business folks are divided into two broad categories.

1. Immigrant investor visas

This form of startup visa is for those business owners who are ready to invest more than a stipulated sum in the US to gain permission to set up their own organization within its territory.

The US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) may approve the required type of investor visa after assessing the investable amount and the merits of the business proposal. The standard immigrant investor visa programs that the USCIS offers are the EB-5 and E-2 investor visa programs.

EB-5 investor visa

USCIS’s EB-5 investor program is an exclusive visa program that startup entrepreneurs can avail of if they meet the following conditions:

  • Invest at least $1.8 million in commercial operations in the US. Business owners can finance this money through both loans and personal savings.
  • Offer a minimum of 10 permanent full-time jobs to qualified job seekers from the US workforce. 

The USCIS approves only 10,000 EB-5 applications every year, which adds to the program’s exclusivity. EB-5 applicants can apply under this visa program with an investment of $900,000 if they set up their American base in designated Targeted Employee Areas (TEA).

E-2 investor visa

The E-2 or the treaty investor visa is for business owners hailing from countries that have signed an investor treaty with the United States.

There are about 80 countries that have an investor treaty with the US. However, countries with a high immigration count to the United States, like India and China, are not covered in the list of eligible countries.

There is no explicitly mentioned investment threshold under the E-2 visa program. However, most US immigration experts suggest putting up an investment sum of at least $100,000.

2. Extraordinary ability entrepreneur visas

An extraordinary ability visa is available for business folks that have carved a remarkable reputation in their native nation or have an outstanding business proposition with great potential.

Due to the qualificatory conditions required for garnering this visa, it is often termed the rockstar visa or the Einstein visa. In most cases, international celebrities and coveted professionals apply for a visa under the extraordinary ability programs with the USCIS.

EB-1 visa

The EB-1 visa is available for those who are able to showcase extraordinary performance in fields like science, education, business, or athletics that have attracted national or international accolades. The applicants’ achievements in their respective fields should be extensively documented.

Individuals can qualify for the EB-1 visa if they satisfy three of the ten criteria as per the USCIS based on their occupational category. EB-1 is a form of permanent residency visa. You can apply for the EB-1 visa with form I-140.

O-1 visa

Akin to the EB-1 visa program, the USCIS offers the O-1 visa to highly qualified individuals as a temporary, non-immigrant visa. Apart from the occupational categories for the EB-1 visa, the O-1 visa is given to people with national as well as international recognition for their contribution to the entertainment industry. Despite being a temporary visa, applicants can reapply for an O-1 visa as long as they continue their business endeavors. The O-1 visa has the following sub-types.

O-1A visa

This sub-category of O-1 visa is for people that have demonstrated extraordinary capabilities in the Science, Business, Athletics, or Education domains.

O-1B visa

The O-1B visa category is for individuals having extraordinary ability in any field of Arts or the motion picture and television industry.

Bottom Line

The United States undeniably provides a desirable habitat for many forms of business entities to flourish their operations. It has in place some special startup visa programs that can support the pioneering spirit of individuals across the globe.

We have mentioned some of the most sought-after startup visa categories above that can help you decide the best path for your business.

The right understanding of the visa requirements under different USCIS programs for business owners is essential to avoid unwanted rejections and delays. It is best to consult immigration law professionals to find the right advice.

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Arnab is a Passionate blogger. He loves to share sentient blogs on topics like current affairs, business, lifestyle, health, etc. If you want to read refulgent blogs so please follow RealWealthBusiness.

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