10 Things you need to know about EB-5 Investments
10 Things you need to know about EB-5 Investments
The EB-5 Investor program allows foreign investors to invest in enterprises in the United States and, in turn, promote the growth of the economy of the United States. Given that this visa is specifically for a specific pool of people in the society – the rich foreigner investors – the number of applicants in this pool is relatively small compared to other types of US visas. The requirements set are usually stringent. This post by RunRex, one of the best law firms in the United States that offers legal representation for immigrants, highlights ten things you need to know about the EB-5 Investments.
1. Minimum investment funds
There is a minimum limit set for the amount that a foreign investor has to invest in the United States enterprise. One has to invest a minimum of $1 million if they are investing in just any enterprise. Investors can, also, choose to invest in regional centers or targeted employment areas that have been approved by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services. If one you decide to invest in such an area, the minimum amount required for investment is lowered by a half to $500000.
2. The investment funds have to be ‘at risk’
In addition to meeting the minimum amount for investment depending on where one chooses to invest in, the investment has to be ‘at risk’. This means that the investor, upon investing, should not have a guarantee of getting their money back.
3. The Investor should invest in a new commercial enterprise
A foreign investor can only invest their funds in a new commercial enterprise. A new commercial enterprise is one that was established after the 29th November, 1990. Companies that were established before the 29th November, 1990 can, also, be considered to be new commercial enterprises if they have undergone a major organizational restructuring or change after the said date. It is important to note that the new commercial enterprise has to be a ‘for profit’ company.
4. Your investment funds have to come from a legitimate source and have a clean path
Fund to be invested have to have been obtained legally. This is one of the things the USCIS is very keen on reviewing. Funds that have been obtained through unlawful and fraudulent means cannot be admitted. An investor has to provide proof of the source of their funds and show a clear path the money took from the source to them. This is one of the most challenging task in the application process since it usually means getting records dating several years back. Gifts and inheritance are usually considered acceptable. Loans are not.
5. Acceptable types of investments
Cash, cash equivalents, inventory and other tangible property are considered to be acceptable forms of EB-5 investments. The acceptable forms of capital are usually valued in U.S. dollars at fair-market price. Purely passive investments like property purchase with no job or commercial creating function are not acceptable forms of capital.
6. The investor does not have to commit all their capital investment right from the start
Investors do not have to commit all their capital investment immediately. All they have to do is make sure that they provide proof that their investment capital at their disposal meets that minimum investment requirement. However, they are required to have done so by the time their two-year conditional residency period ends.
7. Job creation
The investment has to lead to the creation of a minimum of 10 permanent jobs for United States citizens. The main aim of the EB-5 Investor program was to foster the growth of the Economy of the US through capital investment and the creation of jobs for US citizens. As such, an investor has to meet these conditions. The employment condition is, however, contingent on the type of investment an investor chooses to make.
8. Review after 24 months
When an investor qualifies for the EB-5 visa program, they are usually granted conditional residence in the United States. This allows them to legally reside in the United States and invest in the new commercial enterprise that they opted for. After two years, they will be reviewed to see whether they have met the employment requirement. If the investment has resulted in the creation of 10 permanent jobs, then the investor is granted permanent residence in the US. If not, their temporary residence is withdrawn.
9. The investor has to have a clean record
In as much as an investor might have attained all the investment requirements, if they have a criminal record they will be denied the visa. The United States is usually strict with the people it allows within its border. A criminal record increases the chances of your visa petition being rejected.
10. It is best to acquire the services of an immigration attorney
It is best to acquire the services of an immigration attorney to help you apply. There are so many documents that are required to provide proof that the investment funds are legitimate and that the assets meet the minimum requirements. An immigration attorney makes the process smooth and more efficient.