USCIS Continues to drive talent away – Immigrant Entrepreneur Gets Visa After ‘World News’ Story

We have been reporting on the increase in unjust H1B denials for weeks. In many cases applicants and their lawyers are left with the option to appeal or refile. But when the media gets involved, USCIS are forced to change course.

Earlier this week “World News” shared the story of Amit Aharoni, an Israeli national and a graduate of Stanford Business School, who secured $1.65 million in venture capital funding with two cofounders to launch, an online cruise booking company. The company hired nine Americans in just one year.

But Aharoni hit rough waters after he received a letter on Oct. 4 from U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services denying his request for a visa and notifying him that he needed to leave the country immediately. Aharoni moved to Canada, where he was forced to run his company via Skype from a friend’s living room. While “World News’ viewers voiced their disappointment, this morning, Aharoni received an email from USCIS. He was told that his petition had been reconsidered and approved. He is once again able to work in the U.S.

Experts say America’s immigration policy is putting it at a competitive disadvantage. There are other countries that are eager to have entrepreneurs, enticing them with special visas and funding. According to Partnership for a New American Economy, an organization that advocates “the economic benefits of sensible immigration reform,” countries including the United Kingdom, Singapore and Chile have visas for entrepreneurs. Chile even has a program that offers $40,000 in seed funding.

It is a problem politicians in America acknowledge, but have not solved.

According to statistics from Partnership for a New American Economy, 40 percent of Fortune 500 companies were founded by immigrants or their children.

If we fail to give such gifted immigrants the foundation to innovate, we will be the the first ones to loose.