The EB-5 visa is a unique program designed to give legal status to foreign nationals who wish to invest substantial capital in a U.S. business. The EB-5 provides a pathway for permanent residency and, unlike visas based on family or employment status, doesn’t require a sponsor. However, since the requirements are strict, you should consult an experienced immigration attorney before beginning the application process.
A Guide to the EB-5 Visa
What Is the EB-5?
To stimulate the economy and incentivize foreign investment, Congress created the EB-5 visa in 1990. Before this act, foreign-born investors couldn’t gain permanent residency status in the U.S., no matter the size of their contributions in an American company. Up to 10,000 EB-5 visas are available every year, with successful applicants receiving permanent residency status for themselves and qualifying family members.
To qualify, applicants must be prepared to invest a significant sum in a new commercial enterprise created after 1990. These investments may take the form of cash, equipment, or other assets, and don’t necessarily have to be made before submitting your application. However, you must be able to prove that you have the resources available to make a qualifying investment. The minimum qualifying investment is $1 million for most businesses, or $500,000 in rural or underdeveloped areas, and must be used in a way that creates at least 10 new, full-time jobs.
Why Should I Hire an Immigration Attorney?
Successfully applying for an EB-5 visa requires extensive documentation, including your financial records and evidence proving that the investment enterprise is in an approved Regional Center. Navigating this process can be difficult and confusing, but an experienced immigration attorney can explain the qualifications, prepare your paperwork, and handle any unexpected issues for you.
If you’re applying for a visa, turn to the professionals at Berd & Klauss, PLLC, one of New York City’s premier immigration attorneys. They focus exclusively on immigration law, so you can be confident you’ll receive the best legal advice possible. Visit their website for more information about how they can help with your EB-5 application, follow the firm on Twitter for the latest news and updates, or call (212) 461-7152 to arrange your free, initial consultation.