Elite Lawyer

EB-5 Visa Lawyer Overview

Elite EB-5 Visa Attorney

Attorney Assistance With Immigration to the U.S. by Foreign Investors

There are a variety of ways that citizens of foreign countries can immigrate to the United States. In some cases, a person may be able to gain the ability to live in the U.S. as a permanent resident (Green Card holder) by making a significant investment in a commercial enterprise. When applying for an employment-based immigrant visa, a person should be sure to work with an experienced immigration lawyer.

Different classifications of visas are available for certain types of workers. The fifth preference employment-based category (EB-5 visa) is meant to provide an incentive for investors to promote economic growth in the United States and create jobs for U.S. workers. Around 10,000 of these visas are available each year, and a visa will also cover an investor's spouse and unmarried children under the age of 21.

EB-5 Visa Requirements

To be eligible for an EB-5 visa, a person must make an investment of capital in a new commercial enterprise in the United States that will create at least 10 full-time jobs. The capital invested in the business must be owned by the investor, and the investor will be required to provide evidence that it was gained lawfully. Capital may not only include monetary funds, but also tangible assets such as equipment and inventory. As of November 21, 2019, the minimum amount of an investment is $1.8 million, or $900,000 for investments in Targeted Employment Areas, which include rural areas and areas with an unemployment rate that is at least 1.5 times the national average.

A commercial enterprise must be a for-profit business, and it may be structured as a sole proprietorship, a general or limited partnership, a corporation, a holding company, or another type of publicly- or privately-owned business organization. An investor will be required to provide a comprehensive business plan that describes the business, its products and/or services, and its overall objectives. The business plan must be credible, and it should include all relevant information, such as a market analysis, pricing structures, permits that have been obtained, contracts that have been executed, marketing strategies, and the organizational structure of the company. The investor must demonstrate that they are actively involved in managing the business.

An investor will also be required to demonstrate that their new commercial enterprise has created at least 10 full-time jobs for employees who are U.S. citizens, lawful permanent residents, or immigrants who are authorized to work in the United States. A full-time job is a position that requires a minimum of 35 hours per week. If the business is located in a geographical area that is designated as a "regional center," employees which are directly employed by the company and jobs that were indirectly created by the business may be considered under the job creation requirements.

After an investor's EB-5 visa is approved, they will be granted conditional permanent resident status for two years. Within 90 days before the expiration of conditional permanent residence, an investor can file a petition to remove the conditions on residence. This petition must include evidence that the investment was made and sustained during the period of residence, as well as evidence that the required number of jobs were created or that they are expected to be created within a reasonable period of time.

The requirements for applying for an EB-5 visa can be complex, and multiple different types of documentation must be filed. To ensure that this process is completed properly, investors should work with an immigration attorney who understands the procedures that must be followed and who can help address any issues that may arise during the visa and Green Card application process.

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