- What is the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program?
- Requirements of U.S. Immigration and Permanent Residence by Investment
- Immigrant Investor Visa Processing Time
- What Happens After You Receive the Green Card?
- Cost of EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program
The United States is one of the most lucrative destinations for investors globally. It is an economic superpower that contributes to nearly a quarter of the world’s Gross Domestic Product. The country provides foreign investors with a lucrative market, low taxes, and a transparent legal system. However, one of the key advantages of investing in the U.S. economy is the option to obtain a Green Card and apply for permanent residence status.
The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) administers immigration by investment, which is also known as the EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program. Here is a quick guide to the key requirements, processing time, and cost of applying for an immigrant investor visa.
The EB-5 Immigrant Investor Program allows eligible investors to apply for U.S. permanent residence and become Green Card holders provided they meet specific requirements. The spouses and unmarried children below 21 years of age are also eligible to apply for the immigrant investor visa. By applying for the program and obtaining a visa, you can enjoy a wide range of benefits of being a Green Card holder in the United States.
You need to meet the following requirements to apply for immigration by investment:
- Make an investment of $1,050,000 into any non-targeted employment area project in the United States.
- Invest $800,000 into targeted employment projects in a high unemployment area or a rural area.
- Express your interest in creating or maintaining at least ten full-time job opportunities for eligible U.S. workers.
- Invest in a new U.S.-based business, or show that you intend to restructure or purchase a business.
- Present an attractive business plan that defines how the U.S. economy may benefit from the investment.
- Submit documentary proof that you have not acquired the investment capital through illegal means.
The USCIS requires you to invest in a business that was established after November 29, 1990. If the company was incorporated before that date, then it must express itself as a new company due to a major purchase or restructuring. Alternatively, the investment should result in at least forty percent expansion of the company’s employee strength or overall worth.
To apply for immigration by investment, you must invest in a for-profit business. Additionally, it should be one of the following –
- Sole proprietorship
- Joint venture
- Holding company
- Business trust
- Privately or publicly owned structure
The capital investment to obtain an EB-5 visa should be in the form of –
- Secured debt
- Other types of property
Understanding the requirements to file for an immigrant investor visa may be a complex task. A detailed outline of EB-5 requirements is given on the official website of the USCIS.
The processing time for EB-5 application and getting a Green Card may vary. You have to initially file Form I-526, which may take between 47 and 71 months to process. You will also need to check the wait times to receive your visa. Presently, the waiting time for EB-5 applications is zero.
If you are living in the United States at the time of applying for immigration by investment, the processing time may take from 7 to 45 months. This may vary based on the visa service center and the decision made during the Adjustment of Status process. If you are living outside the United States at the time of application, it may take around 4-6 months to get your Green Card through your nearest Embassy or Consulate.
USCIS has an online tool that allows you to check the average processing time of your application based on the Form you submitted, specific category, and the service center.
Once you receive the Green Card, make sure the fund remains invested for three to seven years based on the type of the project. If your application gets approved, you will get a Conditional Green Card for two years. If you can demonstrate that the investments and the jobs are maintained, the conditions on your Green Card will be removed at the end of this period.
The total cost of applying for an immigrant investor visa is between $4020 and $4900. This includes the application fee plus an additional visa processing fee. The cost will vary based on where you are applying from.
It can be complex to understand the key requirements of immigration by investment. Working with an immigration law firm can help you navigate the challenges and obtain your permanent residence status.
Onal Gallant Bayram&Amin PC is a law office specializing in Real Estate Law, Intellectual Property, Corporate and Business Law, Immigration Law, and US Visa Processes. We provide reliable advice on topics like forming a corporation, buying a house in the US, trademark registration, and Green Card applications (e.g., EB3 Visa or DV Lottery). Our experienced lawyers are ready to help with exceptional knowledge and insight into immigration law.
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