What to do if I’m on an F1 visa and I would like to start a business here in the States but he visa is about to expire?

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What to do if I’m on an F1 visa and I would like to start a business here in the States but he visa is about to expire?

I’m on F1 Visa right now and this expires in about a month. After learning education here I found a lot of great opportunities for my vision. So I decided to start a business here. However, I’m fully aware that I can’t with my F1 Visa. I’ve got an apartment and lots of things here and I was wondering if I can start a business in any way without having to return to my own country.

Asked on October 31, 2011 under Immigration Law, Maryland

Answers:

SB, Member, California / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 10 years ago | Contributor

You cannot be starting a business and deriving an income from it while you are in F-1 status.  If you are interested in starting your own business, you need to look at the actual nonimmigrant or immigrant visas that are appropriate for this type of situation and apply for the relevant visa which will enable you to do what you would like to pursue.  If you do not want to return to your home country, you can apply for the appropriate visa and if it is approved, your status will be changed within the US from your current F-1 status to whatever new status you apply for.  If it is not approved as a change of status, then you would have to go to your home country for consular processing.


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