On July 11, 2017 the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) announced that it is temporarily delaying the effective date of the International Entrepreneur Final Rule (the IE Final Rule). The effective date is delayed from July 17, 2017, to March 14, 2018, except for a minor provision which adds the Form FS-240, Consular Report of Birth Abroad, to the list of acceptable documents for Form I-9 verification, which went into effect on July 17, 2017. Written comments must be received on or before August 10, 2017.

This delay will provide DHS an opportunity to obtain comments from the public regarding a proposal to rescind the rule pursuant to Executive Order (E.O.) 13767, “Border Security and Immigration Enforcement Improvements.” The public may submit comments through Federal eRulemaking Portal: http://www.regulations.gov/ or mail to USCIS directly.

The IE Final Rule was published on Jan. 17, 2017, and the original effective date was July 17, 2017. It amended DHS regulations to include criteria that would guide the implementation of the Secretary of Homeland Security’s discretionary case-by-case parole authority as applied to international entrepreneurs. According to the IE Final Rule, if international entrepreneurs can demonstrate that their entry into the United States would provide a significant public benefit to the United States, they can get parole. In accordance with the criteria, such potential would be indicated by the receipt of significant capital investment from U.S. investors with established records of successful investments, or obtaining significant awards or grants from certain federal, state, or local government entities. It also established a period of initial parole stay of up to 30 months to facilitate the applicant’s ability to oversee and grow his or her startup entity in the United States.

On Jan. 25, 2017, the president issued E.O. 13767 which requires the DHS Secretary to “take appropriate action to ensure that parole authority is exercised only on a case-by-case basis, and in all circumstances only when an individual demonstrates urgent humanitarian reasons or a significant public benefit derived from such parole”

DHS decided to delay the effective date of the IE Final Rule after review of E.O. 13767. The delayed effective date will provide an opportunity for the notice and comment rulemaking to take place. We will continue to monitor any guidance that may be published on this rule. Please subscribe to our blog for updates.