The Entrepreneur Forum | Startups | Entrepreneurship | Starting a Business | Motivation | Success

Starting a Business on a Student Visa (F-1)

Accelerate wealth. Build a business that pays freedom. Join more than 70,000 entrepreneurs and register for the Fastlane Entrepreneur forum. Remove ads? Join the INSIDERS.


New Contributor
Read Millionaire Fastlane
Mar 27, 2021
Hey there fastlaners,

I am an exchange student currently on a one-semester exchange program in the United States. I'm currently puzzled on the legality of an F-1 Visa holder such as myself operating a business in the states. My own limited research taught me of OPTs and H1-B programs which permit working and or having a business. However as I am not an undergraduate student or have studied in the US for a year (which I believe is the prerequisite for applying for an OPT and H1-B), the only option which I am left with is somehow being engaged in my business in a way that is "passive" as outlined in this article : F-1 Visa Start-Up Activities | Offit Kurman

The article says that I may engage in the following activities without violating my F-1 Visa:
  • activities that aren’t considered employment e.g. taking orders for goods produced overseas;
  • negotiating contracts;
  • consulting with your business associates;
  • litigating;
  • taking part in conferences or seminars that are scientific, educational, professional, or business related;
  • undertaking independent research;
  • membership of a U.S. company’s board of directors;
  • seeking to invest in the U.S., which would qualify for E-2 investor status.
As such, I am wondering if the above is enough and if it is possible for me to run a business while only having an F-1 Visa. Thank you in advance for all the insight and advice you may have for me!

Sponsored Offers

MARKETPLACE Fox Web School "Legend" Group Coaching Program 2021
Hi - I sent out some emails with the updates but I'll PM you now also, thanks. The issue is...
  • Sticky
MARKETPLACE NEW: The Best School for Going Fastlane (Now open for summer enrollment)
Read the free book, some excellent insights. I also did the website quiz and I did a visual on a...
MARKETPLACE Not sure how to start? This free book will teach you how to build a successful web design business
Hi Fox. Starting the book and got through the introduction. Had a conversation with Andy Black...
  • Sticky
MARKETPLACE You Are One Call Away From Living Your Dream Life - LightHouse’s Accountability Program ⚡
Chris is super sharp and is aware of many facets of entrepreneurship and can help get your...
Introducing MJ's Personal Unscripted Network, Join Now for FREE!
Any chance to make it available outside of US? It has been available outside of the US on...

Forum Sponsor

Learn Fastlane Business Skills & Get Profitable Within 30 Days...

Get Started Now

New Topics

Fastlane Insiders

View the forum AD FREE.
Private, unindexed content
Detailed process/execution threads
Ideas needing execution, more!

Join Fastlane Insiders.

Top Bottom