Big News: FounderDating is joining OneVest to build the largest community for entrepreneurs. Details here
Latest Notifications
You have no recent recommendations.
Name
Title
 
MiniBio
FOLLOW
Title
 Followers
FOLLOW TOPIC

Question goes here

1,300 Followers

  • Name
    Entrepreneur
  • Name
    Entrepreneur
  • Name
    Entrepreneur
  • Name
    Entrepreneur
  • Name
    Entrepreneur
  • Name
    Entrepreneur
  • Name
    Entrepreneur
  • Name
    Entrepreneur

Advice on bringing on non-US-citizen co-founders

I am considering adding a co-founder (equity-only) who is from India and has just finished up a degree at a US university.
He is on a F-1 visa and is doing an OPT with us currently.

I have heard some rumors from other parties that if you not a US-citizen, that you can't own stock (or invest your own money) in a US company that you are also working for. Apparently this makes it difficult for immigrants to start their own companies. We are also unclear on which visa he would need to be on if he stayed with our company as a co-founder for several more years.

Has anyone gone through anything similar to this, and any pointers to resources on this topic?
Thanks.

9 Replies

Paul Ruderman
0
0
Paul Ruderman Entrepreneur • Advisor
Founder & CEO, UpdateZen (www.updatezen.com)
It is my understanding that you can absolutely grant equity/options to non US citizens. Can someone definitively state whether this is true or untrue?
Shobhit Verma
0
0
Shobhit Verma Entrepreneur • Advisor
building an adaptive recommendation engine
I think the rumor Jeff may be talking about is related to how immigration and visa works. You can absolutely grant equity to non-citizens, however when they are going to apply for green card/ H1 visa, they will need to show that they have no material influence over the company's hiring decisions and that they are employed purely because they were the most reasonable choice. If they have 50% equity, proving no material influence is impossible, but with lower equity and specially if you have raised good funding by the time of visa application, you should be fine. Not a legal opinion of course.
David Crooke
1
0
David Crooke Entrepreneur
Serial entrepreneur and CTO
Been there and done that ... also there was a thread on this a few weeks back, might be worth checking the archives. In short: 1. Anyone or any corporate entity can own stock in a US company, and indeed be a director of one. Why would it be otherwise? 2. The F1 is tricky, there are allowances for switching to H1B but there are restrictions. 3. A company must be trading for 12 months before it can sponsor employees for H1B I was on H1B at the time an my solution was to sign on with a "rent a desi" contract shop on a W2 basis, then hire myself from them. Odd but legal :) Cheers Dave
Paul Ruderman
0
0
Paul Ruderman Entrepreneur • Advisor
Founder & CEO, UpdateZen (www.updatezen.com)
Wait, David... one question. My business has only been incorporated for 4 months. Does that mean I cannot sponsor someone for H1B status until after we've been incorporated for 12 months??
Neil Ayton
0
0
Neil Ayton Entrepreneur
CEO/Founder, Mountary Inc #500strong
I am currently working on a H1-B visa which was sponsored by a company that was not incorporated for 12 months when I was sponsored.
Joe Shepherd
0
0
Joe Shepherd Entrepreneur
Figure it out, Get it done, Exceed expectations
I'm in the same boat. One of my cofounders is from India. His sponsorship is from his day job and we are just starting up. I'd love to see any additional experience here.
David Benoit
0
0
David Benoit Entrepreneur
CTO at GoInterpay
Is the degree a bachelor or masters level degree? If it is a masters degree, there is a different (additional) cap for H1B visas. Also, if the person is from Canada or Mexico, it is possible that he/she may qualify for TN status. If the person is going to invest, it may also be possible to apply for E2, EB5, etc. If neither of those work, and the person works for the company outside the US for at least a year, he/she may also qualify for an L1.

I would talk to an immigration specialist.
Jeff Axup
0
0
Jeff Axup Entrepreneur
Sr. Manager, Palo Alto UX Design Research Group at Bosch
It is a Masters in Electrical Engineering. He is not from Canada or Mexico. Jeff Jeff Axup, Ph.D. - [removed to protect privacy] - LinkedIn- About Me ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- What's that new smart-jewelry safety product called Artemis ?
Rob Gropper
0
0
Rob Gropper Entrepreneur
Director at PetHero, SPC - Member at Eastside Incubator - Principal at Tuxedo Technologies Group
there was another thread with extensive feedback on this a few weeks ago...
Join FounderDating to participate in the discussion
Nothing gets posted to LinkedIn and your information will not be shared.

Just a few more details please.

DO: Start a discussion, share a resource, or ask a question related to entrepreneurship.
DON'T: Post about prohibited topics such as recruiting, cofounder wanted, check out my product
or feedback on the FD site (you can send this to us directly info@founderdating.com).
See the Community Code of Conduct for more details.

Title

Give your question or discussion topic a great title, make it catchy and succinct.

Details

Make sure what you're about to say is specific and relevant - you'll get better responses.

Topics

Tag your discussion so you get more relevant responses.

Question goes here

1,300 Followers

  • Name
    Details
  • Name
    Details
  • Name
    Details
  • Name
    Details
  • Name
    Details
  • Name
    Details
  • Name
    Details
  • Name
    Details
Know someone who should answer this question? Enter their email below
Stay current and follow these discussion topics?