What is an EB-5 Visa?
It is a United States Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) visa program for foreign born persons to receive Permanent residency privileges (a U.S. Green Card) for themselves their spouse and any children under the age of 21 by investing in job creating enterprises in the United States. To view the USCIS regulations click here.
How does it work?
The Green card applicant must invest at least USD $500,000 in a qualified U.S. business which creates 10 jobs for U.S. residents. Using a Regional Center allows indirect, induced and direct jobs to be counted utilizing approved economic models.
Can I buy real estate worth $1 million to qualify for the EB-5 visa?
An immigrant investor cannot simply buy real estate or make other passive investments in the United States in order to qualify for an EB-5 visa. The investment must be in a commercial enterprise as opposed to a personal residence or other passive investment. The enterprise must create at least 10 new jobs for U.S. workers (unrelated to the investor).
How do I qualify?
Foreign born individuals who have a net worth of at least US$1,000,000, or who expect annual income this year and had income over the past two years of at least US$200,000 may apply.
Can my family be included?
Yes, your spouse and your children, who under the age of 21 at the time of your EB-5 application are also eligible to receive their own EB-5 U.S. residency visas.
Do I need a U.S. immigration lawyer to process my EB-5 petition?
Yes. You will need a qualified immigration attorney familiar with the USCIS EB-5 Visa (I-526 petition) process to assist with the petition, consulate interview (if you are living abroad) and visa processing. Please note that legal fees and USCIS filing fees are separate and not included in the Regional Center expense fee. We have experienced EB-5 immigration attorneys ready to help and answer questions about your situation. Send email to firstname.lastname@example.org
Do I get my money back if my I-526 petition is rejected by the USCIS?
Yes. If for any reason your Application (I-526 visa petition) is denied by the USCIS, the Escrow Agent will return the investment funds to you.
Do I have to stay in the U.S. once I receive my EB-5 visa?
No. As a permanent U.S. resident, you and your family will be able to travel freely outside of the United States for visits or business purposes, as long as a residence is maintained in the United States. Evidence of intent to reside includes opening bank accounts, obtaining a driver’s license or social security number, paying state and federal income taxes, renting or buying a home. The United States resident may work overseas if required based upon the nature of the business or profession.
I am not currently living in the U.S., what should I do when I receive my Green Card?
You will receive your Green Card at the consulate office in your home country. You must enter the U.S. within 180 days of visa issuance. The investor must then establish residency in the United States (see previous question).
How long does it take?
The EB-5 visa process is a fast track way to receive a U.S. Green Card. Once you decide to invest, you should receive your Conditional Green Card in about 9-12 months. This Conditional Green Card has an expiration of 2 years. Investors can submit to have the conditions removed (I-829 petition) as early as three months prior to the expiration date. FLORIDA OVERSEAS will supply all supporting evidence regarding the limited partnership, capital investment and newly created jobs to submit with the petition.
Once the I-829 petition is filed with the USCIS, your conditional permanent residency is extended for one year while you wait for the permanent Green Card approval (which has no expiration).
What financial documents are required with the EB-5 Visa I-526 Petition?
Legal Source of Funds
The investor must prove that the funds come from a lawful source such as:
Profit or earnings from a business
Proceeds from the sale of real estate
Earnings from stock or other investments
Gifts (financial information regarding the person giving the gift must be provided)
This may be accomplished through certificates by the investor’s licensed accountants, lawyers, court records, salary statements, bank statements, stock certificates, tax statements, real estate documents loan or mortgage documents, promissory notes, security agreements and any or other evidence of borrowing which is secured by assets of the applicant.
Evidence of Transfer of Funds
The investor must provide evidence that the capital investment of $500,000 plus applicable fees has been placed in an escrow account prior to filing the application.
Evidence can include bank statements, documents showing ownership in real estate or a company, accompanied by an appraisal of value and registration of ownership, a gift statement, a loan statement etc.
What personal documents are required?
Copies of passport for each member of the family must be provided
Passports must be valid for travel to the United States and must have at least 6 months validity beyond the issuance date of the visa. Household members can include husband, wide, and all unmarried children under the age of 21.
Employment and Business Documents
Information is required regarding:
Investor’s education, (diplomas)
Employment history, (résumés)
Business experience including any business registrations
Certificates must be provided for all individuals applying for a green card under the investor’s application, including spouse and children under the age of 21 at the time of application:
Certified copies of birth certificates
Other children under the age of 21 (unmarried), even if they do not wish to emigrate
Certified copy of Marriage certificate
Proof of termination of any previous marriage(s)
Divorce or annulment decree (e.g., death certificate of spouse, final decree of divorce or annulment)
Each visa applicant 16 years or older:
Police certificate from the police of each locality of the country of the applicant’s nationality or current residence or where the applicant has resided for at least 6 months since turning 16.
Police certificates are also required from all other countries where the applicant has been arrested for any reason, and must be of recent date when presented.
Police certificates must cover the entire period of the applicant’s residence in any area.
Persons who have been convicted of a crime must obtain a certified copy of each court record and of any prison record, regardless of subsequent benefit from an amnesty, pardon or other act of clemency.
A certified copy of any military record should be submitted.
Two color photographs in passport style are required. No head covering or dark glasses should be worn.
U.S.C.I.S Regional Center Approval