Can I am on an H1B visa and my wife is on an H4 visa, can either one of us open a business in US?

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Can I am on an H1B visa and my wife is on an H4 visa, can either one of us open a business in US?

I am employed on H1B visa and my wife has H4 visa as my dependent. We want to star tan e-commerce business. Are we legally allowed to do that? If not, then can we open a company in our home country and run the online website here in United States. If no, then can we open a company in our home country and open a second company with one of our friends who is a US citizen and then may be 2 companies can collaborate? Als,o we are thinking that in the US company we can be the majority share holders. Is this a viable option?

Asked on April 16, 2012 under Immigration Law, Texas

Answers:

SB, Member, California / FreeAdvice Contributing Attorney

Answered 9 years ago | Contributor

Either one of you or both can open the business but neither one of you is allowed to derive any income from that business since your status only permits you to work for your petitioning employer and your wife's does not permit her to work at all.  Depending on how well the business does, it can petition for you and/or for your wife, assuming it will be able to prove ability to pay and will hire you for a position eligible for a H-1B visa.


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