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manoje

Applying for a B1 visa with the reason to explore business viability to decide whether to pursue E2

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Hi There,


I'm currently working at a startup in SF on my OPT. However, I didn't get a H1B and my OPT ends at the end of June. I already started working on my own startup in the US and we just filed an LLC. It's an ecommerce business. My plan is to leave the country to change a visa and then come back to the US to work on my startup. We are not ready to raise fund. We would need 3-4 months to build traction.


Given this, I'm thinking about getting B1 and then if I can raise fund, I will apply for an E2 visa. I understand that I am not supposed to work but I really really want to do my own startup in the US.


Questions

1. Is coming back to the US to explore business viability or do fund raising (to apply for an E2 visa) a strong reason for B1 visa? I can have my friends issue a business invitation letter.

2. Is my plan to go home to apply for an E2 visa after the trip enough to convince an officer at the embassy that I will leave the country at the end of the B1 visa?

3. Should I work with a lawyer?

4. Or is it better in my case to apply for a B2 visa?


Thanks so much,

Manoje

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Given this, I'm thinking about getting B1 and then if I can raise fund, I will apply for an E2 visa. I understand that I am not supposed to work but I really really want to do my own startup in the US.

While in the US as a business visitor, an individual may:

  • Conduct Negotiations
  • Solicit sales or investment
  • Discuss planned investment or purchases.
  • Make investments or purchases
  • Attend Meetings, and participate in them fully.
  • Interview and hire staff.
  • Conduct research.

The following activities require a working visa, and may not be carried out by business visitors:

  • Running a business.
  • "Gainful employment".
  • Payment by an organization within the US.
  • Participating as a professional in entertainment or sporting events.

Sounds like you're dipping into the 2nd category which you cannot do.


 

 

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Hi There,

I'm currently working at a startup in SF on my OPT. However, I didn't get a H1B and my OPT ends at the end of June. I already started working on my own startup in the US and we just filed an LLC. It's an ecommerce business. My plan is to leave the country to change a visa and then come back to the US to work on my startup. We are not ready to raise fund. We would need 3-4 months to build traction.

Given this, I'm thinking about getting B1 and then if I can raise fund, I will apply for an E2 visa. I understand that I am not supposed to work but I really really want to do my own startup in the US.

Questions

1. Is coming back to the US to explore business viability or do fund raising (to apply for an E2 visa) a strong reason for B1 visa? I can have my friends issue a business invitation letter.

2. Is my plan to go home to apply for an E2 visa after the trip enough to convince an officer at the embassy that I will leave the country at the end of the B1 visa?

3. Should I work with a lawyer?

4. Or is it better in my case to apply for a B2 visa?

Thanks so much,

Manoje

Or how about you go home and apply for the correct visa instead of trying to bend the rules to suit yourself?

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My first thought is as you describe it an E2 is not a suitable vehicle. I would firstly discuss the situation with you your Immigration Lawyer, sounds like you need a plan of action.


“If you know the enemy and know yourself, you need not fear the result of a hundred battles. If you know yourself but not the enemy, for every victory gained you will also suffer a defeat. If you know neither the enemy nor yourself, you will succumb in every battle.”

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