Can I start a company being on H1B?

Gowtham Thotapalli

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I am currently on H1B visa and I have been working on a startup idea. My 140 is not yet approved. I hope it will be by end of this year. I would like to know the options I would have to start on my own and if possible what kind of a role can I play in the company without leaving my current job. I know there would be implications from my employer as well and I am trying to check on that with my HR.

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On H1, you can only be a passive investor. That means putting money into a company and otherwise staying out of it. You can't talk with customers, you can't get money from customers, you can't have access to the bank account, you can't even take the trash out. All that is work and requires the appropriate work authorization. The company would have a CEO who has work authorization.

Also, see


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