How to Get an EB-5 Visa
Getting an EB-5 Visa involves a multi-step process that allows foreign investors to obtain lawful permanent residency in the United States. The EB-5 Visa program is designed to stimulate the U.S. economy through job creation and capital investment. Here’s an overview of how it works:
1. Investment Requirement
To qualify for an EB-5 Visa, you must make a qualifying investment in a new commercial enterprise in the United States. The minimum investment amount is generally $1.8 million. However, if the investment is made in a targeted employment area (TEA), which is an area with high unemployment or a rural area, the minimum investment amount is reduced to $900,000. The investment must also create or preserve a minimum of 10 full-time jobs for qualifying U.S. workers within two years.
2. Selecting a Regional Center
Most EB-5 investors choose to invest through a Regional Center, which is a designated organization approved by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). Regional Centers are involved in economic development projects and have been pre-approved to sponsor EB-5 investments. They typically provide investment opportunities and handle the necessary documentation and reporting for the EB-5 program.
3. Completing the I-526 Petition
The first step in the EB-5 process is filing an I-526 Petition with the USCIS. This petition demonstrates that you meet the eligibility criteria, including making the required investment and creating the necessary jobs. It involves providing evidence of the investment funds’ lawful source, the business plan for the new commercial enterprise, and supporting documentation. The USCIS reviews the petition and makes a decision on its approval.
4. Conditional Permanent Residency
If the I-526 Petition is approved, you and your immediate family members (spouse and unmarried children under 21) can apply for conditional permanent residency by filing an I-485 Application to Adjust Status if you are already in the United States, or through consular processing if you are outside the United States. Once approved, you will receive a conditional Green Card, which is valid for two years.
5. Removing Conditions
Within the 90-day period before the conditional Green Card expires, you must file an I-829 Petition to Remove Conditions. This petition demonstrates that you have fulfilled the investment and job creation requirements. It involves providing evidence that the required capital was invested and sustained, and that the requisite jobs were created. If the petition is approved, the conditions on your residency will be removed, and you will be granted a permanent Green Card.
After maintaining permanent residency for at least five years, you may be eligible to apply for U.S. citizenship through naturalization if you meet the additional requirements, such as knowledge of English, U.S. history, and passing a citizenship examination.
It’s important to note that the EB-5 Visa process can be complex, and it’s advisable to seek the assistance of immigration attorneys and financial professionals with expertise in the EB-5 program to ensure compliance with all legal requirements and to navigate the process successfully.
For more information on the EB-5 Visa program and how to get a Visa, contact Franchise Marketing Systems (FMS Franchise): www.FMSfranchise.com