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EB-5 Visas - Immigration Through Investment

Man standing in a high rise building (looking out a window)Are you interested in the Immigration through Investment option? The EB-5 Visa Program provides an excellent opportunity to obtain the Green Card, or Legal Permanent Residency status.

EB5 Investor Visa Category - Overview

Currently, the Immigration and Nationality Act allows 10,000 immigrant visas per year, which are available to qualified individuals seeking permanent resident status on the basis of their engagement in a new commercial enterprise.

Of the 10,000 investor visas (i.e., EB-5 visas) available annually, 5,000 are set aside for those who apply under a pilot program involving a USCIS-designated "Regional Center."

What is an EB5 Regional Center?

  • Is an economic unit designated by the USCIS as eligible to receive immigrant investor capital through the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Pilot Program.
  • Is an entity, organization or agency that has been approved as such by the USCIS
  • Focuses on a specific geographic area within the United States; and
  • Seeks to promote economic growth through increased export sales, improved regional productivity, creation of new jobs, and increased domestic capital investment.

The Foreign Investors must:

  • Demonstrate that a "qualified investment" (see below) is being made in a new commercial enterprise located within an approved Regional Center; and,
  • Show, using reasonable methodologies, that 10 or more jobs are actually created either directly or indirectly by the new commercial enterprise through revenues generated from increased exports, improved regional productivity, job creation, or increased domestic capital investment resulting from the pilot program.

EB5 Visas - Eligibility

Permanent resident status based on EB-5 eligibility is available to investors, either alone or coming with their spouse and unmarried children. Eligible foreign investors are those who have invested -- or are actively in the process of investing -- the required amount of capital into a new commercial enterprise that they have established. They must further demonstrate that this investment will benefit the United States economy and create the requisite number of full-time jobs for qualified persons within the United States.

In general, eligible individuals to the EB-5 Visa Program include those:

  • Who establish a new commercial enterprise by:
    • Creating an original business;
    • Purchasing an existing business and simultaneously or subsequently restructuring or reorganizing the business such that a new commercial enterprise results; or
    • Expanding an existing business by 140 percent of the pre-investment number of jobs or net worth, or retaining all existing jobs in a troubled business that has lost 20 percent of its net worth over the past 12 to 24 months; and
  • Who have invested -- or who are actively in the process of investing -- in a new commercial enterprise:
    • at least $1,000,000, or
    • at least $500,000 where the investment is being made in a "targeted employment area," which is an area that has experienced unemployment of at least 150 per cent of the national average rate or a rural area as designated by OMB; and
  • Whose engagement in a new commercial enterprise will benefit the United States economy and:
    • Create full-time employment for not fewer than 10 qualified individuals; or
    • Maintain the number of existing employees at no less than the pre-investment level for a period of at least two years, where the capital investment is being made in a "troubled business," which is a business that has been in existence for at least two years and that has lost 20 percent of its net worth over the past 12 to 24 months.

Conditional Residence:

Once the requisite forms are filed and the EB-5 Visa application is approved the foreign investor and his/her dependents may obtain status as a conditional resident.

Permanent Resident Based on Investment

Eligible investors with condition residence for two years may apply for removal of conditions and obtain lawful permanent residence. The applications must be filed within 90 days before the second anniversary of the foreign investors admission to the United States as a conditional resident.

Please visit the links below to obtain general information on other immigrant visa categories:

Contact our US Immigration Attorneys for Applying to the EB5 Visa Program

If you are interested in obtaining or learning more about the EB-5 Investment Visa program, please contact our experienced and knowledgeable immigration attorneys at NeJame Law in Central Florida.

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