The United States is open arms to business owners and entrepreneurs. In 1992, Congress passed the EB-5 program to promote foreign investment into the U.S. economy to promote job creation. This employment-based program is limited to only 10,000 visas and 3,000 are set aside for Regional Centers.
While this is an excellent pathway for investors seeking lucrative business opportunities in the United States, gaining an EB-5 Visa can be competitive and difficult to attain. That’s why it’s important to work with an experienced employment immigration attorney that manages the visa bureaucracy on a daily basis. At the Law Offices of Paul H. Lee, we negotiate the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services system to get investor visas.
How To Qualify For An EB-5 Visa
There are two pathways to the EB-5 program that investors can utilize to gain legal permanent residence. These include what many call the “basic program” or investing in a “Regional Center.”
Applicants must make an investment of $500,000 or $1 million. The amount will depend upon whether it qualifies as a Targeted Employment Area or new business. The Targeted Employment investment generally focuses on a rural area of high unemployment that far exceeds the national average. Investors may qualify to invest the lower number. A $1 million investment into a new enterprise or existing business must create a minimum of 10 new American jobs, generally within 24 months.
Investors can also put their money into Regional Centers. These designated organizations can prove beneficial because they can remove your proof of job creation documentation. By virtue of being certified by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services agency as indirect job creators, you can automatically check that box and move forward.
Pros and Cons Of An EB-5 Visa
Direct investment has its share of advantages and some disadvantages in terms of gaining lawful permanent residence in the U.S. Unlike extraordinary skills and other employment-based visa applications, the monetary expectations are very clear. Still, it’s important to weigh your options with an experienced employment immigration attorney before proceeding. These are some of the pros and cons to consider.
- You do not need to demonstrate a labor shortage in your sector.
- You do not need to hold a permanent position.
- There is no country of origin business or residency required.
- There is no extraordinary ability requirement.
- Substantial capital investment is required.
- You may incur significant financial risk.
As an immigration law firm that routinely works with Fortune 500 companies, our experienced legal team can walk you through the process, discuss your unique business status and help you make an informed decision about EB-5 or other options.
Negotiating the EB-5 Visa Process
Working through the EB-5 visa process involves numerous procedural steps. The importance of getting all of your paperwork right the first time cannot be understated. Applicants are required to file an Immigrant Petition for Alien Investor form. Additional filings may be required depending on whether you are within the United States.
Forms will need to be filed for an interview at a U.S. embassy, consulate or agency field office. Administrators will expect a detailed investment plan that meets all EB-5 criteria and personal background materials. Our team of immigration professionals will work closely with you to be fully prepared.
Contact An Experienced Investment Immigration Attorney
The United States welcomes foreign investment and the EB-5 visa can be an excellent pathway to permanent legal residence. As an experienced immigration law firm, we work closely with corporate leaders, entrepreneurs and members of Fortune 500 companies to obtain EB-5 Visas. If you are considering an EB-5 or other pathway into the United States, contact the Law Offices of Paul H. Lee in New York City for a consultation.