EB-5 Investor Visa
Everything you need to know about the EB-5 foreign investment program in the U.S.
Alpenrose is dedicated to assisting in any personal or business moves made by our clients. Many foreign investors would like to play their cards at U.S. investing, while also experiencing what the country has to offer. If you are looking to make the move to the U.S., and you have $500,000 to $1,000,000 to make an investment, the EB-5 Investor Visa may be your ticket to do so.
The EB-5 Investor Visa program was created in 1990 by the U.S. Congress in order to stimulate the economy by creating jobs and capital investments for foreign investors. In 1992, Congress then created the Immigrant Investor Program, or the Regional Center Program, that set aside EB-5 visas for those looking to invest in commercial enterprises.
Through the EB-5 Investor Visa program, those looking to obtain permanent residency in the U.S. can do so by means of investment. In order to qualify for the program, foreign investors must meet the requirements set by United States Citizenship and Immigration (USCIS).
With this program, applicants, their spouse, and any children under 21 will obtain a permanent residency green card after all the requirements are met.
Before the EB-5
Before one can begin the steps to meet the requirements, the applicant and their family must be evaluated for admissibility to the U.S., the same as anyone seeking a green card. This includes providing proof of a lack of criminal record, significant health issues, assets gained illegally, and more.
The EB-5 Requirements
Like stated previously, applicants of the EB-5 investor visa have a set of requirements they must meet in order to successfully qualify. The requirements include capital investment amount, job creation, and the business receiving the investment must qualify for the program.
This is one of the most important requirements of the program because it is why the EB-5 visa program was initially created. The program has proved quite helpful in regions of the U.S. with high rates of unemployment, for not only the company being invested in, but also the surrounding community.
As stated by the USCIS, EB-5 investments must result in the creation of 10 full-time jobs for local workers in the U.S. The jobs must be created within two years after the investor receives their conditional residency.
Investors are often required to prove that at least 10 jobs were created directly through the investment. Meaning, the position must be held entirely under the commercial entity that received the investment.
Other times, some EB-5 investors are only required to prove 10 full-time indirect or induced jobs were created in the case the investment was made in a regional center. A job created in the business that supplies goods and services to the EB-5 project would qualify as an indirect job. If a job was created in the greater community as a result of the income spent by the EB-5 project employees, it’s called an induced job.
The EB-5 visa requirements state that applicants need to make either a $500,000 or $1,000,000 capital investment in a U.S. commercial enterprise. The investment can be made in cash, inventory, secured indebtedness, property, equipment, or cash equivalents.
In order to make the investment of $500,000, rather than the full million, the investment can be made in a commercial entity in a targeted employment area. The project regarding the EB-5 investment must be in a rural area with high unemployment to qualify for this designation. An area with high unemployment is a location with an unemployment rate of at least 150% of the national unemployment rate at the time of the investment. A rural area can be defined as a region outside of a city with a population of 20,000 or more, or a geographic region outside of a metropolitan statistical area, which is defined by the U.S. Office of Management and Budget.
The USCIS limits what kind of commercial entities can be invested in with the EB-5 program. One kind of business that qualifies is a new commercial enterprise that is lawful, for-profit, formed after November of 1990, that can take form in several different ways. This includes corporations, limited general partnerships, sole proprietorships, business trusts, or other privately or publicly owned business structures.
Older businesses can qualify if the investment leads to an increase of employment of 40% or a net worth increase of the same percentage. An older business can also be restructured to a degree that a new commercial enterprise results, which could then qualify as an EB-5 project.
Along with individual businesses, EB-5 investors can invest into Regional Centers, also known as the Immigrant Investor Program, mentioned above. A Regional Center administers EB-5 projects, so it may work to the advantage of the investor to take this route. The investor would not have to independently set up the project.
Where We Come In
If you are ready to take on the task of making an EB-5 investment, there are several steps you must take in order to complete the process. You will need to find an investment, hire an attorney, prepare your visa petition, file the petition, etc. After the investment is made, there are several more steps to make it into the U.S.
Though the requirements for the EB-5 program are clear and straightforward, there are several steps, both financially and legally, that need to be calculated and timed in order to make the investment and move easily and painlessly. Alpenrose, through a partnership with a respected Washington, D.C., law firm, offers the opportunity for investors to participate in the EB-5 investor visa program. Any foreigner willing to commit at least $500,000 and create 10 jobs in the United States can apply for the program that will grant him/her residency in the U.S.
Alpenrose has also been successfully relocating individuals to Switzerland, the UK, Monaco, Dubai, and Singapore.