Another type of business-based visa is the EB-5 Visa, also known as the “Million-Dollar Investor” visa. A foreign national can apply for a work permit and permanent residency if s/he invests at least $1 million into a new or existing U.S. business enterprise and by so doing can create jobs for a minimum of ten workers who are U.S. citizens or lawful permanent residents (LPRs).
This may sound simple, but if done improperly it can be a very expensive way to get a Green Card, or even an expensive failure.
With guidance from our experienced immigration attorney, you can get your EB-5 Visa quickly and with minimal risk.
When an investor is granted an EB-5 Visa, s/he immediately gets authorization to work and is awarded a two-year conditional residence (spouses and children also benefit). After two years, if s/he continues to meet the requirements of the visa, s/he can adjust status to permanent residency and get a ten-year Green Card and even citizenship after five years. These benefits are greater than those offered by other business-related visas, such as E-1 or E-2 visas, which only offer an indefinite non-immigrant stay.
Where you choose to invest is as important as the industry you choose. Investors who invest in “targeted employment areas,” which are rural or have high unemployment, are only required to invest $500,000. On the other hand, investments in “high employment areas” (urban, with lower-than-average unemployment) have a minimum level of $3 million. One advantage our firm offers in handling your EB-5 Visa is our familiarity with Nevada, much of which is rural and which is currently facing high unemployment.
Qualifying investments must be in either a “new commercial enterprise” or a “troubled business,” since the goal of the EB-5 Visa is to create jobs for American workers. The investment must create at least ten full-time jobs filled by U.S. citizens, LPRs, or other immigrants with work authorization. (The applicant and his/her dependents do not count toward these ten jobs.)
Under new rules, jobs created for at least two years can be counted as “permanent” jobs, and there is some flexibility for measuring jobs created indirectly by an investment.
There is a variety of other requirements, but many of them are intuitive:
- the investment funds must originate from a lawful source;
- only applicants from E-Treaty countries are eligible;
- the capital invested must be at risk and for the purposes of capital gains;
- the investor must be actively engaged in the management of the enterprise either in day-to-day management or in an executive level of “policy formulation”
These petitions require an attorney experienced in this specific area of immigration law, as well as with consular processing and business accounting. Our firm can help you navigate the complexities of this unique type of visa, and we can guide you toward investments which will qualify you for an EB-5 while managing your risk. To learn more about what we can do for you in securing an EB-5 Visa, please contact us today for a free consultation.