Square pegs: Entrepreneurs don’t fit within U.S. visa categories

By Adriana Gardella in Forbes

Soon after Tahmina Watson founded her immigration law firm in 2009, she began to hear the same complaint from her clients, would-be entrepreneurs working for U.S. companies: they couldn’t leave their jobs to launch their startups unless they also left the United States. That’s because the United States doesn’t offer a startup visa that specifically allows entrepreneurs who meet certain requirements to come to or remain in the country. Although the Startup Visa Act was first introduced with bipartisan support in 2010, no version of the law has passed in the years since.

“The U.S. immigration system is based on models established in the 1950s and 60s that don’t accommodate entrepreneurship,” said Ms. Watson, who has expanded her blog on the topic into a book, The Startup Visa: Key to Job Growth and Economic Prosperity in America.

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