The International Entrepreneur Rule Lives!
I am so thrilled to let all my clients, readers, listeners and viewers know that the Biden administration has withdrawn Trump’s attempt to remove the International Entrepreneur Rule! This morning, the Department of Homeland Security issued a notice about it. Here is the link. 2021–09609.pdf (federalregister.gov) For easy reference, I am copying the text below. In the meantime, here are two notes:
- Read my column on Above the Law tomorrow. I had already submitted an article on this issue advocating for it’s revival.
- Here is a refresher on the requirements for the application. https://watsonimmigrationlaw.com/2021/05/02/the-international-entrepreneur-rule-a-refresher-for-startup-founders/
- My Startup Visa Book, second edition will be out this summer. An entire chapter has been dedicated to the IER. It will be worth reading.
- Finally, we’re ready to help all international entrepreneurs with applications. Contact us if you have questions.
A huge thank you to the Biden- Harris administration and to the DHS Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas for the Monday morning good news!
DEPARTMENT OF HOMELAND SECURITY
U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services
8 CFR Parts 103, 212, 274
CIS №2572–15; DHS Docket No. USCIS-2015–0006
Removal of International Entrepreneur Parole Program
AGENCY: U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, DHS.
ACTION: Proposed rule; withdrawal.
SUMMARY: The U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is withdrawing a
proposed rule that published on May 29, 2018. The NPRM had proposed removing DHS
regulations pertaining to the international entrepreneur parole program. Those
regulations guide the adjudication of significant public benefit parole requests made by
certain noncitizen entrepreneurs of start-up entities in the United States.
DATES: DHS withdraws the proposed rule published May 29, 2018 at 83 FR 24415 as
of [INSERT DATE OF PUBLICATION IN THE FEDERAL REGISTER].
ADDRESSES: The docket for this withdrawn proposed rule is available at
http://www.regulations.gov. Please search for docket number USCIS-2015–0006.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION CONTACT: Charles Nimick, Business and
Foreign Workers Division Chief, Office of Policy and Strategy, U.S. Citizenship and
Immigration Services, DHS, 5900 Capital Gateway Drive, Camp Springs, MD 20746;
telephone 240–721–3000 (this is not a toll-free number). Individuals with hearing or
speech impairments may access the telephone numbers above via TTY by calling the tollfree Federal Information Relay Service at 1–877–889–5627 (TTY/TDD).
This document is scheduled to be published in the
Federal Register on 05/11/2021 and available online at
federalregister.gov/d/2021–09609, and on govinfo.govOn May 29, 2018, DHS published a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM or
proposed rule) titled “Removal of International Entrepreneur Parole Program” in the
Federal Register (83 FR 24415). That rule proposed to revise DHS regulations governing
adjudication of significant public benefit parole requests made by certain noncitizen
entrepreneurs of start-up entities in the United States. Specifically, if finalized, the rule
would have removed the international entrepreneur parole program (IE parole program)
from DHS regulations. In response to the May 2018 NPRM, DHS received 892
comments during the 30-day public comment period. The overwhelming majority of
commenters opposed the proposed removal of the IE parole program.
Approximately 8 percent of commenters expressed support for the rule’s removal
of the IE parole program from the regulations and/or offered suggestions for
improvement. Nearly 87 percent of commenters expressed general opposition to the rule
that would have removed the IE parole program, without suggestions for improvement.
Around 3 percent of commenters expressed mixed opinions on the rule and 2 percent
were out of scope. Comments may be reviewed at the Federal Docket Management
System (FDMS) at http://www.regulations.gov, docket number USCIS-2015–0006.
Commenters who opposed the rule did so primarily on the basis that removing the
IE parole program would lead to unrealized economic benefits, damage U.S. innovation
and entrepreneurship, and harm noncitizen startup founders. Additionally, commenters
disagreed with DHS’s assertion that parole is not an appropriate mechanism for a
program promoting entrepreneurs, and they further argued that IE parole is within the
scope of DHS parole authority. Commenters also stated that DHS should not, as one of
the proposed means of winding down the program, automatically terminate IE parole
granted to individuals, arguing this would lead to a significant burden to entrepreneurs,
their startup entities, and the individuals employed by their businesses. In addition,
commenters believed the May 2018 NPRM’s statutory and regulatory reviews, required by Executive Orders 12866 and 13563, did not take into account the full costs of
removing the IE parole program. They argued that there would be significant costs from
losing additional funding from current and future investors, as well as costs related to the
viability and continued operation of the start-up entity. Commenters also felt the May
2018 NPRM did not fully consider costs to small businesses, nor did it provide less
onerous alternatives, as required by the Regulatory Flexibility Act (RFA).
The NPRM was issued subsequent to Executive Order 13767, “Border Security
and Immigration Enforcement Improvements,” issued on January 25, 2017. This
Executive Order had directed Federal agencies to “ensure that parole authority under
section 212(d)(5) of the INA is exercised only on a case-by-case basis in accordance with
the plain language of the statute, and in all circumstances only when an individual
demonstrates urgent humanitarian reasons or a significant public benefit derived from
On February 2, 2021, President Biden issued Executive Order 14010, “Creating a
Comprehensive Regional Framework to Address the Causes of Migration, to Manage
Migration Throughout North and Central America, and to Provide Safe and Orderly
Processing of Asylum Seekers at the United States Border.” This Executive Order
revoked Executive Order 13767. In addition, on February 2, 2021, President Biden
issued Executive Order 14012, “Restoring Faith in Our Legal Immigration Systems and
Strengthening Integration and Inclusion Efforts for New Americans.” This Executive
Order directed Federal Agencies to “identify any agency actions that fail to promote
access to the legal immigration system.”
In light of the recent Executive Orders, DHS has reviewed the May 2018 NPRM
and public comments that were overwhelmingly in opposition to the NPRM and has
decided to withdraw that NPRM. DHS believes that the existing regulations in 8 CFR
212.19 appropriately guide the exercise of discretion, on a case-by-case basis, when considering requests for parole filed by noncitizen entrepreneurs. Such applications will
continue to be decided consistent with the Secretary’s statutory authority to grant parole
on a case-by-case basis when it is determined that the applicant will provide a significant
public benefit and that the applicant merits a favorable exercise of discretion. DHS
further believes that continuing to administer the IE parole program, in accordance with 8
CFR 212.19, and withdrawing the May 2018 NPRM, is consistent with the
Administration’s goal of better ensuring that all avenues available under the law remain
viable options for those seeking to come to the United States, including qualified
entrepreneurs who would substantially benefit the United States by growing new
businesses and creating jobs for U.S. workers. Therefore, for all the reasons discussed
above, DHS is withdrawing the May 29, 2018, NPRM that would have removed the IE
parole program from DHS regulations.
Executive Order 14010, “Creating a Comprehensive Regional Framework to
Address the Causes of Migration, to Manage Migration Throughout North and Central
America, and to Provide Safe and Orderly Processing of Asylum Seekers at the United
States Border”; 8 U.S.C. 1182(d)(5).
Executive Order 14012, “Restoring Faith in Our Legal Immigration Systems and
Strengthening Integration and Inclusion Efforts for New Americans.”
Alejandro N. Mayorkas
U.S. Department of Homeland Security.
[FR Doc. 2021–09609 Filed: 5/10/2021 8:45 am; Publication Date: 5/11/2021]