EB-5 News Archive for April, 2010
Just like all methods of immigration, the process of obtaining a U.S. green card using the EB-5 visa program can get a bit tricky, but laying out the general steps greatly simplifies the process.
The EB-5 visa program allows foreigners to become eligible for U.S. green cards if they invest $1 million in a U.S. business and that investment leads to the creation, or preservation, of 10 jobs.
Choose the investment
The $1 million investment requirement may be the most important part of the program and, as such, requires the most thought. The $1 million can be invested on one’s own or with the help of an EB-5 regional center.
A regional center is an umbrella company of sorts that’s manages the investments with a focus on a targeted geographic region. They can be private entrepreneurs, corporations or government agencies. After being approved for regional center status, the center is tasked with handling the investment. It is estimated that more than 90 percent of EB-5 investments are handled through the 84 regional centers in the country. They have proven to be a safe and reliable way for investors to obtain U.S. green card eligibility.
In some instances, the investment need not be $1 million. In regions designated Targeted Employment Areas (TEA) only a $500,000 investment is required. These areas are distinguished by having an unemployment rate higher than the national average.
One of the most attractive features of the EB-5 visa program is that the participant does not have to settle in the area in which they invested. So the whole country is open to EB-5 investors.
Get the papers in order
In addition to the specific paperwork required for the EB-5 program, it is important for the potential investor to have their identification documents, such as birth certificates, bank statements and immigration papers in order. Having these can make the EB-5 process run much more smoothly.
Be ready to move to America
Once the investment has been made and all the paperwork has been filed, EB-5 investors are generally allowed into the country on conditional resident visas. These allow investors to stay in America while they wait for their green cards.
Finally, if the investment has created 10 jobs, either directly or indirectly, the investor can apply for a U.S. green card. When the green card is issued, the investor and their entire immediate family is permitted to live anywhere in America.
Each year 10,000 U.S. green cards are made available through the EB-5 visa program but less than half are utilized. Only 4,218 were issued last year, according to the U.S. State Department.
The EB-5 visa program allows foreigners to become eligible for their U.S. green cards if they invest $1 million in an American business and that investment leads to the preservation, or creation, of 10 jobs. In economically depressed areas, called Targeted Employment Areas, only $500,000 needs to be invested to become green card eligible.
Three-thousand of the 10,000 green cards are set aside for foreigners who invest through a regional center, a private corporation or government body that directs and manages the investment. However, 3,000 is not a ceiling for EB-5 visas obtained through regional centers; that number can be exceeded, which is a very good thing since it is estimated that 90 percent of EB-5 visas are awarded through EB-5 regional centers.
One of the most attractive features of the EB-5 visa program is that once an investor secures their green card, they can live anywhere in America. They aren’t tied down to the area in which they invested.
The EB-5 visa program provides a proven and reliable route to American green cards for those fortunate enough to afford it.
A forward-thinking automaker wants to receive capital from investors using the EB-5 visa program.
Hybrid-Kinetic Motors, an upstart Chinese-American company, is hoping that the potential to become eligible for a U.S. green card is enough to entice Chinese investors to sink at least $500,000 each into their green auto business, according to Automobile Magazine.
The car maker is planning to open a production plant in Baldwin County, Alabama in the near future and is hoping the EB-5 program will draw investors.
The EB-5 visa program allows foreigners to become eligible for their green cards if they invest $1 million in an American business and that investment leads to the creation, or preservation, of 10 jobs. In economically depressed areas, like Baldwin County, the investment need only be $500,000.
Hybrid-Kinetic Motors has an ambitious vision for itself, which includes selling 3 million cars in 2018. Last year, General Motors, the leading car seller in America, sold 2.1 million.
The EB-5 visa program was introduced in 1990 and offers a proven route to a U.S. green card for those wealthy enough to afford it.
A small town in New Mexico is considering becoming a regional center for the EB-5 visa program.
If the village of Milan wishes to become a regional center it would qualify as a Targeted Employment Area (TEA) because its population is less than 20,000 and its employment rate is higher than the national average, according to the Cibola Beacon.
The EB-5 visa program gives foreigners an opportunity to become eligible for U.S. green cards if they invest $1 million in an American business and that investment saves or preserves 10 jobs. Rather than investing on their own, most foreigners choose to invest through regional centers, private entrepreneurs or government agencies that handle the investment. If a regional center receives the TEA designation the minimum investment is only $500,000.
At a meeting of Milan’s board of trustees, the village’s legal counsel, Bruce Boynton, gave a general outline of the program to attendees and fielded questions. Although nothing firm was decided, Boynton said he would further investigate the EB-5 program and report his findings to the board.
Currently there are 84 regional centers handling EB-5 investments in America with more than 50 waiting for approval.
Most processes involving immigration involve a lot of red tape and the EB-5 visa program is no exception. But preparing oneself for the process can take much of the stress and hassle out of it.
The program, introduced in 1990, allows foreigners to become eligible for U.S. green cards if they invest $1 million dollars in a U.S. business and that investment leads to the creation, or preservation, of 10 jobs.
While in theory the process of obtaining an EB-5 visa looks relatively simple in practice it shares similar perils with most routes to U.S. residency.
In 1993, U.S. Congress created the Immigrant Investor Pilot Program, which allows foreigners to invest in what are called regional centers. This program made it simpler for investors to find EB-5 investment opportunities by allowing private entrepreneurs and corporations to direct and manage the investments. Today, 95 percent of all EB-5 investments are handled through these centers.
Choosing a regional center in which to invest is an important step for someone looking for an EB-5 visa. Indeed, some regional centers only need an investment of $500,000 to grant EB-5 eligibility because they are in designated disadvantaged economic regions. Currently there are 84 regional centers in operation with over 50 waiting for approval.
One should do their best to visit the operator of the regional center and, if at all possible, visit the proposed project site. This will give the investor a better feel for how their money will potentially create jobs.
Also important for the foreign investor is making sure their important personal documents are in order. While each EB-5 application is unique identification documents, such as birth certificates, bank documents and immigration documents generally are required.
Many investors find hiring an immigration lawyer to be helpful in the process. As with choosing a regional center in which to invest, visiting with a lawyer will give the investor a chance to get a feel for their qualifications.
Perhaps the most important thing to have when trying to obtain an EB-5 visa is a touch of patience. At the bare minimum it will be at least nine months before the investor and their family can become conditional U.S. residents. After that it can take several years for the investment to create the 10 jobs required for green card eligibility.
If applicants are properly prepared, the EB-5 visa program is a safe and reliable path towards permanent residency in the U.S.